[Update – AHIP tl;dr: Needs work. But they do like the
30% bonus they’ll receive from people who have a coverage gap “strong incentives for continuous coverage.” Thanks to commenter and ancient horror from the depths of time and space Cthulhu for the heads up.]
The House GOP’s newly-released (and already widely maligned) Obamacare replacement plan has now made a trio of powerful medical interest group enemies: the AARP, the American Medical Association (AMA), and the American Hospital Association (AHA).
The AMA, the nation’s largest physicians’ group representing more than 220,000 doctors, residents, and medical students, was the latest to pile on against the so-called American Health Care Act (AHCA) on Wednesday morning.
Even though the AARP’s focus is older adults, of the three organizations it provided the greatest amount of detail about what’s wrong with this dog of a bill.
This bill would weaken Medicare’s fiscal sustainability, dramatically increase health care costs for Americans aged 50-64, and put at risk the health care of millions of children and adults with disabilities, and poor seniors who depend on the Medicaid program for long-term services and supports and other benefits.
The AARP has also coined the term “age tax,” which I hope protesters, Democrats in Congress and anyone else who wants to protect the ACA use at every opportunity.
The AMA addressed a number of issues, including the age tax in careful language that has a distinct undertone of What are you doing, you idiots?
The AMA has long supported advanceable, refundable tax credits as a preferred method for assisting individuals in obtaining private health care coverage. It is important, however, that the amount of credits available to individuals be sufficient to enable one to afford quality coverage. We believe that credits should be inversely related to an individual’s income. This structure provides the greatest chance that those of the least means are able to purchase coverage. We believe credits inversely related to income, rather than age as proposed in the committee’s legislation, not only result in greater numbers of people insured but are a more efficient use of tax-payer resources.
The AHA notes the lack of CBO score “severely hampers” the ability evaluate the bill and discusses the impact of the proposed changes to Medicaid.
I expect Ryan and his pals in Congress to vigorously ignore these letters because they represent reality, which is full of nogoodniks who don’t understand the importance of giving more money to unimaginably wealthy people and making non-wealthy people as miserable – and dead – as possible.
And now they’ve got their babbling human traffic drum to create the reality they want.
After House Speaker Paul Ryan unveiled the American Health Care Act this week, members of the far-right House Freedom Caucus made their own bet: that Trump isn’t very committed to passing Ryan’s vision for health-care reform and can be swayed to their way of thinking.
Their plan got off to a rocky start. During a meeting with 20 House GOP whips on Tuesday, President Trump said he would do everything he can to get the Republican health-care bill passed, and did not acknowledge that the reaction so far has been almost uniformly negative. “I really believe we’re going to have tremendous support,” he said. “I’m already seeing the support not only in this room, I’m seeing it from everybody.”
But don’t call him a liar.