Tuesday, 22 August, 2017

Florida could be "ground zero" for Republican health plan's effects, AARP says

Texas Reps. John Ratcliffe and Blake Farenthold meet with President Donald Trump in the Oval Office along with other members of the Republican Study Committee to talk about the proposed American Florida could be "ground zero" for Republican health plan's effects, AARP says
Juana Turner | 20 March, 2017, 00:40

"As physicians from across the country and on the front lines, we urge the House and Senate to go back to the drawing board to develop alternative policies to provide coverage, choice and affordable health care". Unfortunately, it probably won't.

However, the GOP plan that he supports calls for the largest cuts to Medicaid since it launched in 1965.

According to Tuvy Guss, a Frederick resident and former actuary for Coventry Health Care and Aetna, a significant number of those 52 million uninsured would be low-income people aged 50 to 64 - a group that becomes more vulnerable under the proposed plan. After all, these individuals probably were not covered before the Affordable Care Act was enacted in 2010, and the rich were doing just fine.

Since S&P Global Ratings estimates a decline in covered insurees of 6-10 million people, I conclude that nearly all of those who will lose their health insurance will be among the non-rich.

And no wonder. The bill eliminates the penalties for not being insured.

They seem not to care if people lose their coverage.

If this bill gets through, big insurance companies will have free rein to charge older Americans a lot more. Those Republicans who decry redistribution of income don't seem to understand what insurance is. So the Republican tax credits are expected to cover less of the premium for these enrollees, particularly those with lower incomes.

But a middle-income family of four and a middle-income 60-year old would come out worse. Those credits don't come close to paying for insurance, however.

The poor will be able to afford coverage: Trump has repeatedly said that the government should help pay for coverage for the poor, dismissing the fact that this is not a popular view among Republicans. But like most reporting on major issues, the coverage is about who's up, who's down, who wins, and who loses. The new plan would turn Medicaid into block grant program and put caps on spending. There's no way this will not curtail coverage.

As Republicans in Congress work to revise the Affordable Care Act, some members of Madison's startup and entrepreneurial community are watching closely with apprehension.

Since the ACA has expanded both need-based care (Medicaid) and age-based care (Medicare), repealing the ACA would be treacherous at best. Among those are a 3.8 percent investment tax on the well-to-do and a 0.9 percent surcharge on wages above $250,000.

"This is a massive tax cut for unpopular industries and wealthy individuals", said Andy Slavitt, who administered Medicare and Medicaid during the Obama administration. While the law requires that everyone presenting to an ER must be seen and stabilized, it makes no provision for hospitals or doctors to be paid for that care.

Price spoke to reporters before a Friday meeting with House Republicans. Democrats are united in fierce opposition. Pharmaceutical industry fees under the ACA total about $2.7 billion a year, and the medical device tax set to take effect in 2018 amounts to about $2 billion per year, Moody's said.

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