The ACA Repeal: Senate Plans

Posted by | Thursday, December 15, 2016
The ACA Repeal: Senate Plans

Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn has been discussing GOP plans to repeal the Affordable Care Act within the first 100 days of the new presidency. With a go-ahead from Trump's transition team, they are working on a plan that will repeal the bill quickly, using reconciliation, a budget-bill passing tool that will allow the GOP to avoid a Democratic filibuster.

Major health care organizations, including those representing patients, hospitals, and doctors, feel a quick repeal will be disastrous, as states have used anticipated federal funding to expand Medicaid programs, and those expansions cannot simply be abandoned. Several other popular provisions, such as the elimination of preexisting conditions to refuse a person health care, and keeping young adults on their parent's health insurance until age 26, are also likely to get the axe.

The plan calls for a quick repeal, but a three-year delay in full implementation. This will allow alternate plans for health coverage of the nation to be developed and rules implemented. 

For now, several key provisions are still in effect. Employers with greater than 50 full-time employees, those that work over 30 hrs/wk, will still have the employer shared responsibility penalties when they do not provide coverage for full-time employees.

The ACA reporting requirements are also still in effect. 2017's reporting will cover 2016, and regulations and reporting requirements will be published after that. But at this time, the plan is to continue all current rules, requirements, and reporting until the full appeal takes place.

Every major health care organization in America has urged Congress and the new president to not repeal the current law until a replacement is ready for roll-out. The catastrophic effects on many communities, if the repeal passes and hospitals can no longer fund employee salaries with Medicare and Medicaid funding, will be devastating, outside of the issue of an estimated doubling of the number of uninsured Americans by 2019, to 59 million.

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