House Republicans finally unveiled their new Obamacare replacement. It’s got a brand new name too: the American Health Care Act (AHCA).
On Monday evening, House Speaker Paul Ryan issued the following statement:
The American Health Care Act is a plan to drive down costs, encourage competition, and give every American access to quality, affordable health insurance. It protects young adults, patients with pre-existing conditions, and provides a stable transition so that no one has the rug pulled out from under them.
On Friday, Speaker Ryan told Ellen Carmichael on the Opportunity Lives podcast that the AHCA would resemble HHS Sec. Tom Price’s bill.
The AHCA will dismantle the Obamacare taxes and eliminate the individual and employer mandate penalties. At the same time, it will prevent and prohibit health insurers from denying coverage, and, most importantly, help young adults obtain health insurance.
Millennials, in particular, were worried about that last point as young adults under the age of 26 will be able to stay on their parents’ plan if they can be claimed as a dependent.
According to a Kaiser Family Foundation report, millennials benefit greatly under the new AHCA proposal. For a 27 year old living in Fairfax County, Virginia making $30,000 per year in 2020, an individual can earn up to 81% or $900 more in tax credits compared to the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
The AHCA goes beyond that estimate by suggesting that individuals can receive anywhere between $2,000 to $14,000 in monthly tax credits.
And, like Sen. Rand Paul’s (R-KY) proposal, the AHCA will expand the usage of Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) by doubling the cap on contributions.
One of the big questions that remain, however, is how the new healthcare law will be funded for low-income individuals and families, who need financial assistance to purchase health insurance. The AHCA intends to implement a Patient and State Stability Fund that will give more power to the states via $100 billion per state. This is funding that would allow states to design their own programs that would help low-income families and patients with unique needs.
While voting on the new AHCA bill are expected shortly, there are Republican governors and congressional members on the fence because their states have taken billions of dollars via Medicaid expansion under the ACA. AHCA intends to transition to a “per capita allotment” for Medicaid, which will essentially put a cap on Medicaid spending.
Read the full American Health Care Act here.