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Proposed Legislation
Proposed in May 2017

Policy Summary

The American Health Care Act (AHCA) passed in the House of Representatives on May 4, 2017. The Republican-sponsored bill aims to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Under the AHCA, Medicaid expansion would be rolled back, and its status as an entitelment program would end. Instead, the House Bill calls for Medicaid providing states with block grants or an allotment for enrollees. The taxes imposed on the wealthy, insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies, and manufacturers of medical devices that were included in the ACA to help subsidize health care costs for low-income people would be removed under this new health care bill. This could result in billions of dollars in tax cuts for the rich, without any additional assistance for the poor.

Other changes include basing tax credits to help pay for insurance on age, instead of income. Additionally, the bill removes the individual mandate and offers fewer protections for the elderly and those with preexisting conditions. The bill will also allow states to apply for waivers to opt out of certain ACA provisions, such as essential health benefits. Under the AHCA, Planned Parenthood will no longer be eligible for federal reimbursements. The Congressional Budget Office did not have time to evaluate the latest version of the bill, but its previous assessment estimated 24 million people would lose their insurance coverage if the AHCA became law. LEARN MORELEARN MORELEARN MORE

Analysis

The ACHA will not only fundamentally change our current healthcare system but also have a negative impact on our economy. Undoing the Affordable Care Act will result in less government spending on Medicaid and fewer subsidies for private insurance. In addition, the American Health Care Act will cut taxes for high-income Americans. As a result, Representative Pelosi claimed: “It [Trumpcare] will destroy nearly 2 million jobs across America.” A study by the George Washington University claimed that three distinct factors will lead to job loss due to Trumpcare. This drastic cut in jobs will be caused by a major cut in spending on Medicaid, fewer subsidies for private insurance, and tax cuts for higher-income Americans will lead to fewer jobs in America.

A study by the Center for American Progress claims that less spending on health care due to cuts to Medicaid and fewer health insurance subsidies will directly result in lower employment in the future. The study hypothesizes that around 1.2 million jobs will be lost due to tax cuts, 1.7 million jobs would be lost because of less spending and Medicaid, and around 505,000 jobs would be lost because of the replacement of individual subsidies with tax credits (coupled with the end of the individual mandate). In total, there will be about a loss of 2.9 million jobs by 2022. A study found by the Milken Institute School of Public Health at the George Washington University estimates that the job loss will affect all sectors because of the lack of federal funding is expected to be cut by 1.5 trillion between 2019 and 2023 which means that there will be less money to spend on hiring. In addition, only about a third of the job losses will be in the healthcare sector – the rest will be in all other industries where companies are forced to spend more on their healthcare and have less disposable income to spend on workers salaries’. LEARN MORE

Engagement Resources

  • AFL-CIO – The American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations is a national trade union center and the largest federation of unions in the United States.
  • American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees – The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees is the largest trade union of public employees in the United States.
  • 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East – This is the largest healthcare union the United States. With a membership of 400,000 including retirees, its stated mission is to achieve quality healthcare, good jobs and social justice for all.
  • Stand with Planned Parenthood – check out and get involved with the number of ways to support Planned Parenthood as they fight to keep offering accessible and affordable health services.
  • US Senate – Contact your local representatives to take a stance against this proposed legislation.

This brief was compiled by Vaibhav Kumar. If you have comments or want to add the name of your organization to this brief please contact vaibhav@usresistnews.org.


 

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