AHCA could raise premiums for millions with pre-existing conditions


19 May, 2017

Arkansas, on the other hand, secured a waiver that allowed it to use federal Medicaid funds to purchase private insurance for low-income individuals on the federal marketplace.

The Trump administration on Tuesday encouraged states to ask for Obamacare waivers to set up high-risk pools, creating a pathway for interested states to begin to adopt key parts of the GOP's repeal plans even before they pass a bill through Congress. The GOP health care strategy is now clear: It's a $1 trillion "revenue-neutral" tax cut for the rich, "paid for" by a $1 trillion cut to "health care" for millions of Americans.

Broken down by political affiliation, 63 percent of Democrats and 45 percent of independents said the expansion should be left in place. But he said Senate Republicans are looking at other ways to deal with the issue than the House's approach.

For people with chronic conditions, such as asthma and diabetes, Obamacare resulted in more affordable care, more regular care, better adherence to their medications, and better self-reported health, the study found. For years Republicans in the Virginia state legislature have doggedly resisted expanding the Medicaid program that helps provide health care for Virginians who are unable to obtain or afford health insurance.

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The think tank's study breaks down, state by state, the projected impact of the House plan's rollback of Medicaid coverage for low-income households. But some of those people might get a job that offers health insurance, or marry someone with a job that offers health insurance. Where Obamacare made sure that insurance companies couldn't charge individuals more for pre-existing conditions or based on their gender, the AHCA will not have that same protection.

After the 2,700-page behemoth was signed, dozens of economists explained why Obamacare not only couldn't work, but would also make health insurance rates go up and limit health care choices. House passage of AHCA was just one step, but it was an important one, and it would not have been possible without the direct involvement of President Trump and Vice President Pence. But it would let states opt out of a federal requirement that insurers not charge higher premiums for people with sick people as long as the state has established a risk-sharing mechanism, such as a high-risk pool. Moreover, the bill appears to have very little support from the American people.

"A core commitment of mine throughout this process was to ensure those with pre-existing conditions are protected". Another 34 percent of Republicans didn't know or had no opinion, the highest level among party affiliations. The House passed the AHCA in May and the bill is now in the Senate.

May is Mental Health Awareness Month, a time for us to raise our voices about the impact of mental health and critical importance of helping break down the barriers to getting high quality and easily accessible mental health care to those in need.

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