This New York Times article, Oregon Study Reveals Benefits, and Costs, of Insuring the Uninsured - NYTimes.com, explores what happens when chronically ill, chronically poor people gain access to healthcare.
One of the conclusions, after a scant three years, is that there is no savings as a result of having coverage. I think this is not a long enough period of time to get an accurate reading on this. By and large, the recipients of the healthcare lottery have been doing without for years. Now, they can get the care and treatment they've foregone for years...and it takes several years to get healthy again. This is exactly what they're doing! Getting healthy or, at least, healthier again.
I think this is the time to begin to get an accurate reading on the actual benefits gained from making healthcare accessible to all. What will happen over the next three years with these people? What will be their healthcare costs now that they've gotten chronic conditions under control, gotten long-delayed procedures performed, and gotten their physical and psychological health under control?
What's your opinion?