22 million fewer Americans insured under Senate GOP bill


The Congressional Budget Office released its analysis of Senate Republicans' health care bill on Monday, and found that if the legislation were enacted, it would leave an additional 22 million Americans without health insurance by 2026.

The U.S. Senate's bill to overhaul healthcare would result in 22-million more uninsured Americans over the next decade when compared to the current law - that's according to the Congressional Budget Office.

The CBO report released Monday finds that 15 million more people would be uninsured in 2018 than under current law, largely because penalties for not having coverage would go away.

As he did during the House negotiations, Mr Trump has personally pushed for a Senate bill, calling fellow Republicans to mobilise support.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who praised the CBO's findings, is pushing for a vote on the bill this week. CBO predicted that Medicaid spending would be reduced by almost $880 billion over the next decade in the House bill, which calls for a more rapid phaseout of Medicaid expansion in states that elected to extend that option to those earning up to 138% of the federal poverty level. "For example, the amount of federal revenues collected and the amount of spending on Medicaid would nearly surely both be lower than under current law". But it also imitates Obamacare by providing tax credits to help low- and middle-income households buy private insurance, capping their premiums as a percentage of their earnings.

The American Medical Association also came out against the Senate bill on Monday, arguing it would violate the "do no harm" principle of the medical profession.

A conservative Republican senator who doesn't back the GOP health care bill is using unusually sharp tones to criticize party leaders.

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Republicans can only afford to lose two members to pass the bill, which would then come down to a tie-breaking vote by Vice President Mike Pence. The House bill unveiled last month shaved the federal deficit by $119 billion. Insurers need healthy customers who are affordable to cover to help pay the costs of people with medical conditions that are costly to treat. Obamacare pressures people to buy insurance by imposing a tax penalty on those who don't, but the Republican legislation would repeal that penalty, effectively erasing Obama's so-called individual mandate.

So far, five Republican senators are expressing opposition to the Senate GOP plan that would scuttle much of former President Barack Obama's health law.

"I can not support a bill that's going to result in tens of millions of people losing their health insurance", Collins said. And the White House immediately issued a statement attacking the CBO, saying it's proven that in the past that it's incapable of predicting insurance coverage. That so-called continuous coverage provision is meant to encourage more Americans to buy health insurance, and not wait to buy it until a medical need arises. In a letter to Senate leadership, the AMA objected to placing caps on Medicaid, which will cut hundreds of billions of dollars from the insurance program for the poor and disabled, and to letting insurance companies waive requirements that they must cover certain key services.

Conservative Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., said he is opposing the Senate bill because it "is not anywhere close to repeal" of the Affordable Care Act. The bill would help, in part, by appropriating money for cost-sharing reduction payments and eliminating a health insurance tax, according to Blue Cross-Blue Shield insurer Anthem. All four said last week they'd oppose the bill without changes, as did Heller.

CBO found that premiums would likely rise next year and the year after under the Senate bill, but would fall after that. The new amendment, it's hoped, would stop people from waiting until they get sick to purchase a health plan.

Changes in rules about insurance prices would also cause big premium increases for older Americans who don't qualify for subsidies. So Senate Republicans could significantly boost the spending in their bill over the next few days.