Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius should be charged with voodoo accounting for her July 11 op-ed [“The truth about health-care reform”]. She wrote, “Between 2000 and 2009, the average family premium more than doubled, from $6,438 to $13,375, an annual increase of 8.1 percent. From 2009 to 2011, family premiums still rose — but at a rate 25 percent lower. That generated savings of more than $1,200 per family ….”
Ms. Sebelius implies that American families pocketed $1,200 when in fact they do not. A rate increase of 8.1 percent versus a rate increase of 25 percent less than 8.1 (just over 6 percent) is still an increase. Americans are paying more for health care year over year. No one is saving $1,200.