House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) claimed the chief actuary for the health insurance giant BlueCross BlueShield told him that the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, is in a “death spiral.”
In a Q&A following his speech at the Economic Club of New York Monday, Ryan said that failure and collapse in the healthcare industry are looming, noting the handful of healthcare companies that have withdrawn from the exchanges.
“This is gonna happen to healthcare reform. It will happen because Obamacare is imploding. I mean United’s out. They’re gone. They’re leaving. They lost $600 billion last year — United Healthcare — the biggest health insurance company in the country. Aetna, gone.”
“Just the not-for-profits are sticking around,” Ryan added.
Ryan also noted a recent conversation he had with the top actuary for BlueCross BlueShield in which he was told that their financial experts are bracing for the downfall of President’s Barack Obama’s signature law.
“The chief actuary stood up and said. ‘Congress you gotta understand’ — and they call it Obamacare too, I don’t mean any disrespect by that, it’s just what people use the words — he said, ‘Obamacare’s failing two years ahead of schedule.’ This thing, it’s not working. It’s not gonna work. It’s in what we call a death spiral. And so we’re going to have to change this thing. That’s going to have to happen.”
However, the White House remains firm in its commitment to making the law work.
In a letter to insurance companies last week, the president thanked the remaining partners for their participation.
“We know that this progress has not been without challenges. Most new enterprises have growing pains and opportunities for improvement,” Obama wrote. “The Marketplace, while strong, is no exception.”