Friday, May 5, 2017

California Blue Cross CEO Renounces GOP Health Care Bill

Kaiser Health News - Repeal and Replace Watch:
  Blue Cross CEO Denounces GOP Healthcare Bill
by Craig Terhune
The chief executive of Blue Shield of California, the largest insurer on the state’s insurance marketplace, issued a blunt critique of the Republican health care bill, saying it would once more lock Americans with preexisting conditions out of affordable coverage.
In an interview with California Healthline on Wednesday, Paul Markovich said the GOP’s American Health Care Act is “flawed” and “could return us to a time when people who were born with a birth defect or who became sick could not purchase or afford insurance.” The bill is set to come up for a vote in the House of Representatives on Thursday. (California Healthline is produced by KHN.)
Paul Markovich (Courtesy of Blue Shield of California)
An amendment to the bill would allow states to roll back key consumer protections in the Affordable Care Act, including the popular provision that prohibits discrimination against patients with a history of illness. Some Republicans say that flexibility will help lower premiums overall and expand coverage choices for consumers.
Markovich, however, said “it’s a moral imperative” to guarantee coverage regardless of medical history. “The discrimination, whether on price or just on the ability to access insurance at all on preexisting conditions, is unconscionable. As a country, we are better than that,” he said.

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