Healthcare chiefs overwhelmingly predict the U.S. Supreme Court will rule in favor of the government in the King v. Burwell case, which threatens health insurance subsidies in states that don't run their own exchanges, according to results of Modern Healthcare's inaugural CEO Power Panel survey.
The survey indicated 75% of CEOs believe the court will side with the government, and that would be good for their organizations; 2% said subsidies would be upheld, but it would be bad for them. The Affordable Care Act has already provided significant benefits, said Dr. Gary Kaplan, CEO of the Virginia Mason Health System, Seattle.
The consequences of dramatically raising premium costs for low- and moderate-income individuals who have purchased plans on the federally operated exchanges will sway justices, said Dr. David Bailey, CEO of Jacksonville, Fla.-based Nemours Children's Health System. And, if the high court sides with the plaintiffs, up to 5 million children could be left without health insurance.
In all, 24% of CEOs said the Supreme Court would not uphold the subsidies, with 18% saying it would be bad for their organization, and 6% saying it would be good for them.
Chris Van Gorder, CEO of Scripps Health in San Diego said it's just as likely the conservative-leaning court could rule against the government. A ruling in favor of the plaintiffs wouldn't be the death of the ACA, he said, but would lead to the creation of more state exchanges.