The American Health Care Act, which is the GOP’s health plan to replace Obamacare, has gotten even worse.
AHCA Raises Premiums
According to Congressional Budget Office’s evaluation of the AHCA, the increase in premiums would rise 10 percent less than if the law remained the same, “By 2026, average premiums for single policyholders in the nongroup market under the legislation would be roughly 10 percent lower than under current law, CBO and JCT estimate.” However, this estimate is very misleading.
The CBO came up with this estimate by assuming that many older people will drop their coverage because premiums for older people will increase dramatically. For example, a person who is 64 years old with a yearly income of $26,500 would pay a net premium of $1,700 under Obamacare. The same person would pay a net premium of $14,600 under the AHCA. When older people drop their coverage, it raises the proportion of younger people buying insurance, and since their coverage cost less, the increase in premiums is less.
The CBO’s apples-t0-oranges comparison led to their misleading result. According to the Brookings Institution an apples-to-apples comparison causes premiums to increase [emphasis mine]:
The CBO estimate does not, therefore, answer the question of greatest interest, which is how CBO expects the AHCA to affect average premiums for a given generosity of coverage and a fixed population of individual market enrollees.
However, other information provided in CBO’s analysis can be used to answer this question. Using that information, we estimate that premiums would be around 13 percent higher under the AHCA than they are under current law, holding plan generosity and the individual market age distribution fixed at their current law levels.
New Moms Must Find Work in 60 Days After Delivery or Lose Coverage
On Monday, March 20, in an effort to appease conservatives, Paul Ryan added a provision to the AHCA that would allow states to rescind Medicaid coverage from new moms if they have not found work within 60 days. Forcing new mothers to job hunt right after their baby’s birth is surprisingly cruel, even for Republicans.