CBO Finds GOP Healthcare Bill Will Increase Uninsured By 23 Million

A highly anticipated estimate from the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office found that the House Republican bill to repeal and replace Obamacare would decrease the budget deficit but increase the number of people who are uninsured.

The CBO score said the bill known as the American Health Care Act would reduce the deficit by $119 billion over the next ten years, $32 billion less than estimated under the original version of the legislation.

However, the review also found that the bill would increase the number of people who are uninsured by 23 million in 2026 relative to current law.

An estimated 51 million people under age 65 would be uninsured in 2026, compared with 28 million who would lack insurance that year under Obamacare.

The CBO also found that the House Republican bill would tend to increase health insurance premiums relative to current law by an average of about 20 percent in 2018 and 5 percent in 2019.

Premiums are expected to decrease starting in 2020, although the CBO noted the drop would vary depending on any waivers granted to states and on how those waivers were implemented.

Average premiums in states that do not request waivers would be about 4 percent lower than under the current law by 2026, affecting about half the population.

About a third of the population resides in states that would make moderate changes to market regulations, leading to 20 percent lower premiums.

Meanwhile, the CBO said about one-sixth of the population resides in states that would obtain waivers involving both essential health benefits and community rating, resulting in instability in the non-group market.

While average premiums would be lower, the CBO said premiums would vary significantly according to health status and predicted less healthy people would face extremely high premiums.

“Over time, it would become more difficult for less healthy people (including people with preexisting medical conditions) in those states to purchase insurance because their premiums would…

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