Republicans are offering tax deductions for Health Savings Accounts as a way to reduce medical costs. Robert Kraig with Citizen Action of Wisconsin says the plan would only make problems worse. He says that's because the average deductible is nearly $4,000 a year, which is almost double the level set by many insurance plans.
Assembly Speaker Mike Huebsch has said HSAs give consumers more control over their health care dollar. However, Kraig says any extra freedom comes at a cost. He says the Assembly plan also takes money out of the insurance system, by allowing wealthy people to put their health care expenses into a tax sheltered account.
The Republican plan was a counter to the universal health care system offered by Senate Democrats and the Governor's BadgerCare Plus proposal. Both of those plans have faced mixed criticism and support so far. Kraig says the GOP proposal is a polar opposite of those plans.
Lawmakers are debating health care reforms as state budget negotiations continue.