ACS CAN urges Gov. Scott to oppose Graham-Cassidy Repeal Bill

Congress is set to debate again a GOP plan to change the Affordable Care Act

Congress is set to debate again a GOP plan to change the Affordable Care Act

Beyond repealing many provisions of the ACA, the Graham-Cassidy plan, like the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA) the Senate voted down in July, would convert the Medicaid program's open-ended federal funding to a capped per-enrollee allotment to most states going forward from 2020.

William Hsiao, Li research professor of economics at the Harvard Chan School of Public Health (HSPH), observed that the United States is "the only affluent country in the world to build a system around the free market"-a choice he diagnosed as the root of its health-care problems". But another reason for the light attention it received at the time was that the consensus of wonks and pundits (present company excluded) that the Medicaid expansion was such a sweet deal for the states that they'd all take the deal, if not immediately then after health care providers and other interested parties weighed in. The small window has spurred some hesitant politicians into action to possibly repeal the ACA by supporting the Graham-Cassidy bill.

The state Human Services Department is proposing copays and even monthly premiums for patients in the state's Medicaid program, which provides coverage for low-income people.

What's more, the current legislative proposal retains ACA's Medicare and Medicaid cuts (these cuts amount to about $1 billion annually for Virginia starting by 2021). Susan Collins (R-ME), who has also expressed concerns about the Graham-Cassidy bill, some good news.

"I think we're one or two votes short, and I don't see those other one or two votes coming", he told reporters in a conference call Wednesday, but he added, "I hope I'm wrong". After that date, a simple majority will not suffice to pass the measure - rather, 60 votes would be needed to do so. "But Republicans campaigned on this so often that you have a responsibility to carry out what you said in the campaign". I know that as a Democrat he had been willing to advocate in support of Medicaid, and against cuts that would hurt people here.

The ACA's stumbles have been much publicized, and the symposium's speakers noted a few of them: higher premiums for a fraction of Americans, instability in some health insurance marketplaces, deductibles that can be thousands of dollars (though low-income Americans receive some subsidies to help cover that).

It should be an idea attractive to Republicans who believe in less federal power.

The protest comes after Tennessee veterans argued that this latest attempt to repeal the act would be harmful to veterans, leading them to wonder where they will get coverage. "The health-care industry has to embrace the Medicaid program", Walsh said.

New Mexico is among the states that opted, under Obamacare, to expand Medicaid to more people.

Avalere, an independent health policy consulting firm, estimated the bill would lower federal health care spending by $215 billion through 2026. Avalere estimates that between 2020 and 2027, federal funding under the new block grants would be $489 billion less than under current health financing. "The state could work with adequately funded block grants as long as the state had the ability to control costs", said Insurance Director Dean Cameron in an email. The proposal would replace the expansion of Medicaid payments to the states with a "per capita cap" on the federal Medicaid payments based upon the population of the respective states.

Some states, however, would receive additional funding.

If the law were not extended after 2026, CT would lose another $3.2 billion in 2027, Kaiser said.

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