| Taber Estes Thorne & Carr Attorney Jane Taber quoted in The Texas Lawbook article |
Healthcare Lawyers: Supreme Court Decision "Anti-Climatic" and Business As Usual
|June 29, 2012 11:59 am|
The Texas Lawbook:
Texas Republican leaders delayed planning for health care reform, choosing instead to put all their bets on the law being found unconstitutional. Now that it has been upheld in a 5-4 decision, they have to consider how to implement the law.
For hospitals, health insurers and physicians who have been quietly implementing portions of the Affordable Care Act for the past two years, the ruling means they don't have to reset their efforts. There was a clear sense of relief that the court didn't do what many observers had predicted: throw out the individual mandate while keeping other requirements intact.
Instead, the court determined that the requirement that individuals purchase health insurance was within Congress' taxing authority.
Will Law Improve Affordability?
On the morning of the ruling, Dallas lawyer Jane Taber was negotiating the purchase of a physician practice group by a hospital. She expects more such consolidations as doctors and hospitals try to lower costs and achieve economies of scale by bundling reimbursement for medical procedures involving patients on Medicare and Medicaid.
"We're seeing — and we have ever since the bill passed — a consolidation of hospital and physician practices throughout Texas," said Taber, a member of Taber Estes Thorne & Carr.
A major test for the Affordable Care Act, which won't be fully implemented until 2014, is whether it slows the growth of health care costs so they are more in line with other cost-of-living expenses.
"This hasn't resolved our health care problems by any means," Taber said.
© Copyright 2012 - The Texas Lawbook.
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