Trump And Republicans Refuse To Stop Their Health Care Sabotage

This week, Trump and Republicans continued their efforts to sabotage health care for millions of Americans, which have already sent health care premiums skyrocketing across the country.


The Trump administration finalized rules expanding the use of junk insurance plans.  This will roll back consumer protections and destabilize ACA marketplaces.


New York Times: “The Trump administration announced a sweeping new rule on Tuesday that will make it easier for small businesses to band together and set up health insurance plans that skirt many requirements of the Affordable Care Act, offering lower costs but also fewer benefits … The new entities would be exempt from many of the consumer protections mandated by the Affordable Care Act. They may not have to provide certain ‘essential health benefits’ like mental health care, emergency services, maternity and newborn care and prescription drugs.”



Vox: “But policy experts warn that together, these changes could represent a serious threat to Obamacare: Trump wants to open more loopholes for more people to buy insurance outside the health care law’s markets, which experts anticipate would destabilize the market for customers who are left behind with higher premiums and fewer insurers.”


A group of Republican-aligned think tanks released a new ACA repeal plan.  It would end the ACA’s Medicaid expansion and essential health benefit protections.


The Hill: “The plan was drafted by groups led by the Heritage Foundation, the Galen Institute and former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-Pa.), who have been leading meetings for months. It is similar to the plan from Sens. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), which failed to pass last year, in that it eliminates ObamaCare’s Medicaid expansion and the subsidies to help people buy coverage, instead converting that money into block grants to states.”


The Hill: “A coalition of conservative groups on Tuesday released the outlines of a new plan for repealing and replacing ObamaCare, indicating that at least some corners of the Republican Party are still pushing for repeal … The plan also eliminates ObamaCare’s essential health benefits, which require plans to cover a range of services like mental health and prescription drugs.”


Washington Post: “The new rules allow plans to exclude coverage for maternity care, prescription drugs, mental-health services and other ‘essential health benefits’ the ACA requires of coverage sold to ­individuals and small businesses.”


Trump’s push to end the ACA’s protections for those with pre-existing conditions threatens Americans across the country.


Ohio: “After fighting addiction for 21 years, Toledo resident Richard Dugan is finally clean. Through 15 months of intensive therapy and frequent trips to the methadone clinic, he’s kicked his heroin habit and started working 30 hours a week. But last week, when the U.S. Justice Department said it will no longer defend key components of the Affordable Care Act intended to protect patients with pre-existing conditions, Dugan began to worry that his life would unravel again. ‘If they take away my benefits, then I’m definitely in trouble,’ Dugan said. ‘I’m just getting back on my feet. I don’t need all that.’”


Florida: “In his campaign to stop the dismantling of Obamacare and one of its most popular provisions — protection of individuals with pre-existing conditions — U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson met with a small group of local residents in Orlando to demonstrate how individuals could be affected if the provision is repealed … Odella Julien, a certified nursing assistant in Orlando, has type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure … ‘If we lose this I would have to choose between feeding my daughter and paying for my prescription,’ said Julien, one of seven Orlando residents who shared their stories with Nelson.”