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Analysis: Deficit may be biggest threat to healthcare reforms

Reuters, December 19, 2011

A mounting U.S. deficit could pose a much greater threat to the survival of President Barack Obama's healthcare reforms than either the Supreme Court or 2012 elections. Many health experts say innovations in delivering medical care and the creation of state health insurance exchanges for extending coverage to the uninsured are likely to continue in some form even if Obama's 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is struck down or repealed. But former top healthcare policymakers from Democratic and Republican administrations warn that some of the most promising measures for controlling costs, while improving quality and access to care, could run aground as early as 2013 if a new Congress and administration respond to the fiscal pressures with arbitrary spending cuts.