Health and Science

Obamacare can't make health care cheaper: Langone

Langone to GOP: Let Obamacare happen

The Affordable Care Act known as Obamacare "defies the whole concept" of its intended purpose to make health insurance more affordable for more people, billionaire entrepreneur Ken Langone told CNBC on Wednesday.

"Insurance is a fairly simple," Langone said in a "Squawk Box" interview. "It's spreading risk. It's sharing risk."

"You're not going to bring 35 million more people into the pool for care and say, 'We're going to do it cheaper,'" he argued. "We're living longer. The longer we live, the more health care we need."

Langone, a Republican, added that his party should not have fought to delay the law, because only a few days after the government reopens "we find out we can't run this thing."

(Read more: Langone to GOP: Shutdown gave party 'black eye')

The GOP-controlled House Energy and Commerce Committee will hold another Obamacare hearing Wednesday with Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius on the hot seat over the federal exchange's website troubles and the cancellation notices going out to people who bought health insurance on their own.

President Barack Obama will also defend his health-care law Wednesday in a speech from Boston, where then-Republican Governor Mitt Romney in 2006 signed the Massachusetts health-care law.

(Read more: Governor to Obamacare critics: 'Chill out')

One of the cornerstones of trying to make health care more affordable is getting healthy young people—who will presumably use their insurance less frequently—into the pool to offset the costs of older and sick people.

Ken Langone, founder & CEO at Invemed Associates.
Adam Jeffery | CNBC

"Those kids can now wait for a condition, a pre-existing condition, and now say, 'I want insurance,'" Langone argued. "The risk to the insurance company goes up exponentially because the kid is coming in unhealthy, not healthy."

The health-care law mandates most Americans buy health insurance or a pay a tax penalty. Young people "can pay the penalty and not come in at all. But the penalty is not going to be enough to generate the revenues to offset the higher cost of older people," the Home Depot founder Langone said.

He also said the home improvement giant can no longer offer its part-time workers participation in company health insurance because Obamacare mandates that it's illegal to offer health-care to part-timers. "We didn't end it, the government ended it."

(Read more: Aetna CEO: Why insurance will be costing more)

How to fix the health care law: UHS CEO

To help bend the cost curve, each provision of the health-care law needs scrutiny, said Alan Miller, chairman and CEO of Universal Health Services, an operator of hospitals and behavioral health centers.

"This far-reaching law covering 17 or 18 percent of the economy tried to do something on a broad, broad scale that I think was unnecessary," he told CNBC.

But Miller said the general idea of the law to extend health coverage is a good thing for America and a good thing for the hospital industry.

Universal Health reported better-than-expected third quarter earnings and revenues after the closing bell on Tuesday.

By CNBC's Matthew J. Belvedere. Follow him on Twitter @Matt_SquawkCNBC.