Hickenlooper blasts House approval of American Health Care Act

The Minnesota Health Department, part of Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton's administration, reported shortly before the House vote that the number of Minnesotans without health insurance dropped more sharply in greater Minnesota than in urban areas since 2011.

Given that the majority of the population has some underlying condition, very few people will receive the best rates for their health insurance.

"Let me state it one more time: We will replace (Obamacare) with a system that protects pre-existing conditions", McCarthy said on the House floor before Thursday's vote. It all depends on what you call a lie. Private for-profit health insurers do whatever they can to insure groups of healthy people because that's where the profits are.

Jennifer Tolbert, who is the Director of State Health Reform at the Kaiser Family Foundation, has read the AHCA and says at this point, it's not entirely clear how consumers with these conditions will be affected. The Republican health plan also is expected to raise premiums for older people, who are more likely to have a pre-existing condition.

"The effect for us, ACA or not, is that we'll keep treating people without health insurance", she said.

"I think what you'll find is that the plans going forward won't be as comprehensive as what we have now under the ACA". Advisers can help them prioritize and could even collaborate on trying to get them the insurance they need. "So how long until GoFundMe is our nation's leading health care provider?" he asked in a now-viral tweet, which quickly racked up over 25,000 retweets and 53,000 "likes".

However, in order to qualify for this waiver, the state must have an established high risk pool, or it must be participating in a federal high risk pool.

The current US system is based upon an insurance model, which is created to provide coverage for medical emergencies.

Much of the backlash to the AHCA surrounds the long list of pre-existing conditions that insurers would be allowed to use as a reason to charge exorbitant fees that effectively deny coverage altogether.

According to a CBO estimate issued in late March, the House GOP plan would cut the federal deficit by $150 billion between 2017 and 2026. The flip side: With pools covering the highest-cost patients, premiums for other citizens could fall.

"Taking both tax reductions and benefit reductions into account, the average high-income family would be significantly better off and the average low-income family would be significantly worse off under the A.H.C.A". Under this bill, for instance, states can redefine the "essential" health benefits insurers must offer. Whether hiking premiums simply for being pregnant or classifying a C-section as a "pre-existing condition", the AHCA doesn't exactly align with Republicans' stated policies.

"We will see that people who utilize care more will wind up paying more", Hartwig said.

But Obamacare defenders have said that past efforts by states that ran high-risk pools for such people have failed to cover enough people, and did not have adequate funding. "The most recent amendments to the bill did nothing to alleviate those concerns, and in fact have made the legislation even more troubling by jeopardizing important protections for those with pre-existing conditions".

So while a person may be eligible for coverage, they might not be able to afford it. Mr. Connor said the AHCA would provide $8 billion nationwide for pre-existing conditions, which he said is "woefully inadequate".

That helps explain why the American Medical Association and other medical organizations are anxious that many people will lose their coverage under the House bill.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)

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