Medicaid Cuts Highlight Senate Health Care Reform Bill
This week, the Senate Republicans released the draft text of their bill to scrap key parts of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The repeal bill would also overhaul Medicaid and give states the ability to waive ACA insurance requirements. Highlights of the bill include:
- Medicaid expansion will stay as is under the Affordable Care Act for three years, then a three-year phase-down will start. In 2021, funding would be through per capita amount or block grants.
- States would not be able to expand Medicaid after three years. In those states that do expand by the deadline, the federal government would pay a smaller portion of the cost starting in 2021.
- Insurance subsidies assistance cut off at 350% of the poverty line.
- Insurers would be able to charge older customers up to five times more than they charge younger customers. People over the age of 50 pay more in subsidies.
- $40 billion for 2018-2020 to stabilize the insurance market, and an additional $62 billion in state grants.
- Establish Medicaid Flexibility Program which would allow States to change what qualifies as an essential health benefit.
- Losing the individual and employer insurance mandate.
- Establish the Better Care Reconciliation Implementation Fund.
- Repeal many taxes on things such as medical devices, prescriptions medication, FSAs and HSAs.
- Insurance companies are not allowed to increase someone’s premiums or deny coverage based on preexisting conditions.
The Society has stated its concerns and opposes any cuts to the Medicaid program that would affect the population that relies on Medicaid funding for PA/LTC services. The Society will review the bill and issue its analysis at a later date. To read the bill in its entirety click here.