Monday, January 27, 2014

GOP Obamacare "Alternative" - goodbye to all that

The Senate's old-new Obamacare alternative features reductions in Medicaid, reductions in premium subsidies, and loopholes to allow insurance companies to refuse to insure people, charge more to older people and dramatically increase the number of people with no health insurance which for some reason that escapes me seems to be a major policy goal of today's reactionary GOP.  If you are a glutton for punishment, the whole thing is HERE. - GWC

TPM reports: GOP Senators Offer Yet Another Obamacare Replacement

"The legislation is put forward by Republican Sens. Orrin Hatch (UT), Tom Coburn (OK) and Richard Burr (NC). It would begin, like its predecessors, with repealing Obamacare.

But the bill would keep some of the law's more popular provisions, namely allowing children to stay on their parents' insurance until age 26. Otherwise, it would roll back the law's reforms to the insurance industry, doing away with the individual mandate, rules regulating premiums based on age and the requirement that insurers not discriminate against anybody with pre-existing conditions.

Here's what it would do:
Insurers are banned from discriminating against people with pre-existing conditions -- if those people have had insurance for the previous 18 months, a significant step back from Obamacare's reforms that unilaterally prohibits discrimination based on health conditions.
Americans with incomes up to 300 percent of the federal poverty level would be eligible for an age-adjusted tax credit to help purchase private insurance. A new federal office would be responsible for administering the tax credits.
Medicaid would be reformed as a quasi-block grant. States would receive a capped allotment based on their number of residents under the federal poverty level. States would be given flexibility to reform their Medicaid programs using those dollars. People eligible for Medicaid would also be able to access tax credits to purchase private coverage.The senators said that the bill would be budget-neutral by capping the currently unlimited tax exclusion for employer-provided health coverage."

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