The new House Republican health plan would shift an estimated $370 billion in Medicaid costs to states over the next ten years, effectively ending the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion for 11 million people while also harming tens of millions of additional seniors, people with disabilities, and children and parents who rely on Medicaid today.
Here's a sweet deal for insurers buried in the GOP's new Obamacare bill. Health insurance companies could realize a $1 billion or more windfall over the next decade — and end up paying their CEOs even more money — because of a simple tweak in the GOP's proposal to replace Obamacare. That tweak, buried in cryptic language on page 67 of the bill, would end the $500,000 cap that health insurers currently have under the Affordable Care Act on deducting the cost of executives' compensation as business expenses on their taxes.
While official numbers are not available on the number of people who would lose coverage, "a report from Standard & Poor’s
estimated that two million to four million people would drop out of the
individual insurance market, largely because people in their 50s and
early 60s—those too young to qualify for Medicare—would face higher
costs," reports the Times. "Other analysts, including those at the
left-leaning Brookings Institution, have estimated larger coverage losses."
"Legislation could also fundamentally weaken the insurance market by
doing away with the so-called individual mandate, which requires people
to have coverage or pay a tax penalty," reports the Times. "While it
would be replaced by a 30 percent surcharge when someone buys a policy
after dropping coverage, the surcharge could be weaker than the current
mandate, and younger people might continue to gamble on not having
coverage until they get sick. The result, said Donald H. Taylor Jr., a
health policy professor at Duke University, is that people who buy coverage are sicker, causing the cost of premiums to soar."
The American Medical Association, the largest association of
doctors in the country, warned House lawmakers on Wednesday that the
GOP's Obamacare replacement plan introduced earlier this week is
"critically flawed" and puts millions of Americans at risk of losing
their coverage. The association's president, Andrew Gurman, says his group's
highest priority is to ensure the largest number of people are
guaranteed health coverage and complained it is impossible with the
Republican plan — the American Health Care Act — to determine how many
people would get or lose coverage compared to former President Barack
Obama's Affordable Care Act. "As drafted, the AHCA would result in millions of Americans
losing coverage and benefits. By replacing income-based premium
subsidies with age-based tax credits, the AHCA will also make coverage
more expensive — if not out of reach — for poor and sick Americans. For
these reasons, the AMA cannot support the AHCA as it is currently
written," Gurman said.