Regrettably, ObamaCare was passed, and now the hope lies with repeal. With an influx of freshmen in Congress, most of whom support repeal, what is in store for health care in the coming months? Repeal? Probably not. Defunding? Likely. Uncertainty? Definitely.
One of the most destructive things governments can inflict on industry is uncertainty. Even when bad laws exist, businesses are smart enough to work through them profitably, provided they remain consistent. What we have seen in the last two years is an environment of uncertainty rarely seen before. This has resulted in businesses and their capital sitting on the sidelines.
Undoubtedly, the health care industry is feeling the same way with what is happening in Washington. Pharmaceutical companies and device makers may reduce research budgets to cover the new taxes.
Insurance companies, unlikely to speak out after Health & Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius‘ actions, will likely begin developing packages suited to regulations rather than consumer choice. Or perhaps these companies will ignore the Obama Administration’s warnings in hopes of receiving rewards when a more sympathetic government comes to power. Either way, they are unsure of where to deploy capital for fear of changing regulations, and are simply waiting to see what happens next.
These days, the economy and the health care industry are more akin to walking a tightrope than selling a product.
– Spencer Harris