Domenica, 24 Settembre, 2017

'If Obamacare Is Hurting People … Why Shouldn't It Hurt The Insurance Companies'

Trump makes threats over healthcare 'If Obamacare Is Hurting People … Why Shouldn't It Hurt The Insurance Companies'
Pamela Guccione | 06 Agosto, 2017, 06:47

Although Trump's tweet may suggest otherwise, members of Congress and their staff get their health insurance through the Obamacare exchanges.

These payments help offset costs for insurers to provide low out-of-pocket costs for poorer Americans.

"The case will continue regardless of what the administration can do", said Timothy Jost, an emeritus law professor at Washington and Lee University who closely follows health policy. That would improve insurers' ability to anticipate future costs, and give them more confidence about staying in the program. Most of the remainder of Obamacare's fans pay nothing because they are covered under the law's Medicaid expansion, pay little because they make very little and are heavily subsidized, are older and have rates that are kept artificially low because healthy young adults are correspondingly overcharged, or are already sick and thus very expensive to cover. That's right: the government would be spending more for us to get less.

"The Administration has the opportunity to stabilize the health insurance market across our nation and ensure that our residents can continue to access affordable health care coverage", the statement from the Health and Human Services Committee of the National Governors Association said. The Democratic state attorneys general could ask the DC Circuit to block any such directive, but lawyers following the case told BuzzFeed News they weren't sure the court would have jurisdiction to do that.

It's not clear what Trump means in the tweet about how the Affordable Care Act should "hurt the insurance companies".

Trump, frustrated that he and Republicans have not been able to keep campaign promises to repeal and replace Obamacare, has threatened to let it implode. When Trump took the White House he continued the appeal, to allow lawmakers time to pass a bill to repeal Obamacare and make the payments disappear altogether.

Trump has frequently claimed that the Obamacare markets are doomed without his intervention.

Insurers don't see the government subsidies as "bailouts".


Those making closer to the upper income threshold get a roughly $700 discount annually on their deductibles, paying an average of $2,900.

Trump did warn us that there was going to be so much winning, we'd get sick and exhausted of winning. "That's not a bailout, that's them keeping their word". The ruling could make it more hard for the White House to carry out recent threats by President Donald Trump to cut off the payments, giving legal standing to a new set of the payments' defenders. Their "fixes" include maintaining the insurance subsidies, raising the minimum number of employees for a firm to be forced to provide insurance from 50 to 500; and canceling the medical device tax. "We know the president is poised to throw us under the bus and we know because he said so'".

The order cuts off one way that Trump could stop the payments - a way that would have given him the cover of a court ruling.

In other cases, insurers are looking for more limited premium increases for the suites of products they offer in individual states, reflecting the variety of situations in different markets.

The next step is constructive action by Congress.

Further complicating matters, the federal courts have ruled these subsidies unconstitutional.

As the uncertainty continues, insurers and state officials are closely following what happens in Washington.

Nonetheless, the payments remain under a cloud because of a disagreement over whether they were properly approved in the health law, by providing an "appropriation". The appellate court order allowing states to intervene means the Trump administration can not unilaterally stop the CSR payments and dismiss the appeal, according to Tim Jost, emeritus professor at the Washington and Lee University School of Law and an expert on healthcare reform. Insurance plans need to decide really soon what premiums they'll charge for all of 2018.

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