There is Another New Senate Healthcare Bill — Here’s Everything You Need to Know
Senate Republicans have once again released a revised version of their healthcare bill in an effort to drum up more support. The new bill aims to keep insurance costs down for Americans, while preserving taxes on high-income individuals originally planned for removal.
The revised bill would provide an additional $70 billion, on top of $100 billion already in the original bill, for states to use to make healthcare more affordable by reducing premiums or out of pocket costs.
The current version of the bill would continue to change Medicaid in a system where states would receive a fixed payment. However, the new version would, in the event of a public health crisis, allow for more funds to be added that would not count towards the state’s cap.
Also in the new bill, insurers under certain conditions would be allowed to sell plans that do not meet the standards created by the Affordable Care Act like minimum essential coverage.
Finally, the bill would provide $45 billion to help the opioid crisis.
Already, two Republican Senators – Susan Collins of Maine and Rand Paul of Kentucky – announced their opposition to the bill, going so far as to oppose a motion to begin the legislative process next week.
Senators Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Bill Cassidy of Louisiana released their own alternative version to the plan.
Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia voiced “serious concerns about the Medicaid provisions,” although came just short of rejecting it.
Remember, the Senate currently consists of 52 Republicans, 46 Democrats and 2 Independents who caucus with the Democrats. This means that if one more Republican defects, the seven-year march to repeal the Affordable Care Act comes to an end.
These defections show the widening divide between the moderate and conservative wings of the Republican Party. On one side, the moderates fear that cuts to Medicaid could lead to many in their state losing their coverage, and on the other side the conservatives want to see the Affordable Care Act dismantled completely.
With a seemingly endless stream of updates and speculation about the law, the only way to remain properly informed is through education. The Certified Healthcare Reform Specialist® designation has all of the information you need to navigate the shifting waters of healthcare reform. Sign up today!