Economist: 10k More People Will Die Annually If GOP Tax Bill Is Passed

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Lawrence Summers says repealing Obamacare's individual mandate will result in an estimated 10,000 deaths per year.

Former White House economist Lawrence Summers expects 10,000 more Americans to die annually if Republicans pass their tax bill into law, zeroing in on repeal of Obamacare's individual mandate as the cause.

"I think this bill is very dangerous," he said on CNBC's "Squawk Box" program. "When people lose health insurance, they're less likely to get preventive care, they're more likely to defer health care they need, and ultimately they're more likely to die."

In an op-ed for The Washington Post, Summers laid out his methodology in estimating the number of deaths. He made use of the Congressional Budget Office's estimate that 13 million Americans will lose insurance if the tax bill passes and relied on studies from the Urban Institute and the Chan School of Public Health to reach his conclusion.

[Summers] used a more conservative estimate of 10 million dropping coverage. The studies estimated that one person in a range of 176 to 830 people die when they lose health coverage. Pushing that up to 1 in 1,000, Summers said a rough estimate then is that 10,000 a year will perish.