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Fact Check: Is President Obama's latest health care promise true?

 

 Is President Obama’s latest health care promise – that his plan will offer “most” people a better plan for the same price or less than their current policy – actually true?

 Some analysts say no.

"That’s not an accurate argument," says Avik Roy of the Manhattan Institute. "If your plan is now covering a bunch of things that you don’t need, then how is it a better plan for you?"

 Former Congressional Budget Office Director Doug Holtz-Eakin says there's no evidence to support the president's claim.

"You can do the math," he says. "Most of the policies in his claim could spend more, cover more things, provide more visits and charge less." But, he concludes, "the arithmetic just does not work."

Obama’s remarks last month were an effort to deflect criticism for having earlier promised that people could keep their plans and doctors no matter what.

 "Most people, he said, "will be able to buy better plans for the same price or even cheaper than what they've gotten before."

 A few days after that promise, the president appeared to downgrade the pledge somewhat, saying only that "there's a good chance that they'll be able to buy better insurance at lower cost."

 The promise that "most people" would be better off is sharply disputed by many, including a number of individuals experiencing sticker shock, including those with pre-existing conditions.

They include Tom Gialanella of Seattle, who had a policy that was renewed for years even after he had cancer -- not the kind of sub-standard policy the president likes to criticize.

 But he says his new policy under ObamaCare "went from $891 a month to $1,437 a month and also my deductibles all doubled."

Andrew Leonard recently told Fox News’ Greta Van Susteren that he "would get the terrible, terrible plan with the $6,000 deductible." As far as the premiums are concerned, he said, " I'll pay $1,200 dollars a year for that and I'll be less insured than I am today."  

 Analysts say those whose policies are canceled will get new coverage, but not at lower prices.

 "What we're seeing is that the new ObamaCare plans typically have higher deductibles than the old plans did," says Roy, along with "a narrower choice of doctors and hospitals and yet higher premiums."

 David Hogberg of the National Center for Public Policy Research adds,"It's very easy for a bronze plan to have a deductible (with) total out of pocket costs that are $6,000."

 That, of course, means the individual doesn't get a dollar of benefits until he or she has exceeded $6,000 in expenditures, much more than many young people spend on medical care.

 Rosemary Gibson of the Hastings Center and author of "The Battle Over Health Care" points to a  Nov. 14 letter from one of the top officials implementing the law that concedes subsidies won't help everyone.

 She describes it as "a letter from Gary Cohen to state health insurance commissioners saying while many people still have subsidies, there will still be some people who will be paying more than they were paying."  

 In fact, one insurance plan that asked not to be identified analyzed its pool of 375,000 people and found that,  even after subsidies, only 10 percent would actually see a decrease in costs, while one third would face significant rate increases as a result of ObamaCare.

 

Jim Angle currently serves as chief national correspondent for Fox News Channel (FNC). He joined FNC in 1996 as a senior White House correspondent.

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