The Cruz amendment, the insurers argue, would "especially" hit families who earn too much to qualify for a tax credit but can't afford the higher premiums for more robust plans. Asked about the unified wall of opposition to the GOP plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act - from patient groups, hospitals, doctors, seniors, and even the insurance industry - Price replied, "It's really perplexing, especially from the insurance companies, because all they have to do is dust off how they did business before ObamaCare".
The Senate Republicans' latest effort to overhaul the Affordable Care Act is "unacceptable" and shows little improvement over the lawmakers' first attempt to reform the federal health care law, said the chairman of the US bishops' domestic policy committee.
For such patients, "I would be pretty nervous", said Sabrina Corlette, a research professor at Georgetown University's Health Policy Institute. As a result, while the counties in which most Texans live offer three or more choices for marketplace insurers (55 percent of Texans live in these 35 counties) and 85 percent of all Texans (23 million) have choices of two or more insurers, some rural Texas counties representing 15 percent of the population have only one health insurer on the individual exchange.
Proposed changes to Medicaid funding in the bill continue to be an obstacle as Senate leaders try to rally the 50 votes needed to even bring the measure up for a vote, much less pass it next week. Then let's consider pre-existing conditions. It is designed so the increase in the cost of health care will out space annual Medicaid costs. Our insurance is increasingly funded by corporations and government.
On top of that, it slashes federal Medicaid funding, which funds almost half the births in the USA, health care for 10 million people with disabilities, and 70 percent of nursing home care.
Ultimately, taxpayers are stuck with a huge bill because of government health-care entitlements. The CBO also estimated that cuts to Medicaid would hit $772 billion by 2026.
The number of people without insurance would jump by 18 million within a year or so, and 32 million within a decade.
Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) also reportedly will not vote for such a motion, although for different reasons. As many as 20 million Americans get coverage this way, about half through subsidized markets like HealthCare.gov, created under former President Barack Obama. States might also respond to funding cuts by using federal waivers to experiment with consumer-driven insurance design or to implement delivery system reforms in Medicaid. Providers have no incentive to reduce costs.
Under the bill, health savings accounts could be used to pay premiums with pre-tax money.
The provision would let insurers sell low-priced policies with skimpy coverage, as long as they also sell policies that meet a stringent list of services they're required to provide under Obama's law, like mental health counseling and prescription drugs. The CEOs of AHIP and Blue Cross/Blue Shield, the largest medical insurers in the U.S., released a letter calling the amendment's plan "unworkable".
Some insurers are anxious because of a technical change with huge practical implications: Health plans that enroll healthier customers would no longer have to cross-subsidize those with sicker patients, as is now required. "At a time when tax cuts that would seem to benefit the wealthy and increases in other areas of federal spending, such as defense, are being contemplated, placing a "per capita cap" on medical coverage for the poor is unconscionable".
Among them: guaranteed coverage at standard rates for people with pre-existing conditions, comprehensive benefits, coverage of preventive care - including birth control for women - at no added cost to the consumer, and limits on out-of-pocket spending for deductibles and copayments.