The House Republican bill to replace the Affordable Care Act would boot three million children off the healthcare rolls, while causing a total of 23 million people of all ages and income levels to lose health insurance by 2026, experts say.
The American Health Care Act (AHCA), (H.R. 1628), passed by the House on May 4, would cause turmoil in coverage for many consumers. These coverage losses would occur mainly because the House bill would effectively end the ACA’s Medicaid expansion; cap and cut federal Medicaid funding for seniors, people with disabilities, and families with children; cut subsidies for individual market coverage; and let insurers charge sharply higher premiums to people with pre-existing conditions.
About three million children would lose coverage, increasing the uninsured rate for children by about 50%, according to an analysis by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.
Children would lose coverage mainly because the House bill would cap and cut federal Medicaid funding (including for children) and slash tax credits that help moderate-income families afford coverage in the individual market. But children could also be affected by the House bill’s repeal of the ACA’s Medicaid expansion for low-income adults, which extended coverage to millions of low-income parents. Research has found that extending coverage to parents results in greater participation among eligible but unenrolled children as well.
About 6.4 million young adults — about 1 in 8 people in this age group — would lose coverage. Young adults have sometimes been described as the winners under the House bill, because the bill would reduce average individual market premiums for young adults, at least before accounting for tax credits. But in fact, both lower- and middle-income young adults would see large coverage losses, unsurprising given the large coverage gains these groups made under the ACA. While these gains partly reflect the ACA’s provision allowing young adults up to age 26 to remain on their parents’ health insurance plans (which the House bill would maintain), the uninsured rate for adults age 19-29 fell by more than one-third between 2013 and 2015. The ACA’s age 26 provision took effect in 2010, while Medicaid expansion and the ACA’s major individual market reforms took effect in 2014, benefitting millions of young adults.
The broad coverage losses under the House bill are the mirror image of the ACA’s widely shared coverage gains. Between 2010 and 2015, every age and income group saw uninsured rates drop by at least a third. The AHCA would almost or fully reverse the ACA’s reductions in uninsured rates for all age and income groups, while more than reversing the ACA’s coverage gains.
Info: https://goo.gl/2RhKJN (report).
|Uninsured Rates Under ACA and American Health Care Act|
|Uninsured Rate, 2026|
|Number Losing Coverage (millions)|
(age 18 and below)
|Adults age 19-29||14%||27%||13%||89%||6.4|
|Adults age 30-49||11%||20%||9%||84%||8.2|
|Adults age 50-64||8%||17%||9%||104%||5.1|
|Adults below 200% of
the poverty line
|Adults above 200% of
the poverty line
|Income less 200% of the poverty level|
|Income greater than 200% of the poverty level|