CARSON CITY, NV (KXNT) – Groups that fight for access to health care are speaking out against President Donald Trump’s new proposal to allow low-cost, low-benefit health insurance plans to be sold in the United States.
Activist groups say President Trump’s proposal to allow cheaper, low-benefit health care plans is just another attempt to upend Obamacare, and predict it will drive overall prices further up, not down. On Tuesday the administration proposed a rule change that would exploit a loophole in the Affordable Care Act that allows “short-term” policies that don’t comply with the minimum coverage requirements. The new rule would extend them to 364 days.
“They tend to exclude many, many more things than just maternity care,” said Frederick Isasi, with the non profit Families USA. “So they exclude things like mental health care, in patient hospital stays, things that have huge costs to families,” Isasi added.
Families USA also believes these so-called “skinny” plans do not cover pre-existing conditions, have no annual or lifetime spending limits and can leave people with massive debts.
The president’s supporters said this will give people a low cost option and predict only about one to two hundred thousand people will sign up. this follows the G-O-P decision to lift the individual mandate to buy insurance as part of the tax bill.
Isasi said these two moves are designed to destabilize the health care system by getting rid of young , healthy people from the much larger insurance market.
“What this threatens to do is pull some of the healthiest people who are lowest risk out of the existing pool and make coverage much more expensive for folks who might be higher cost or have higher needs,” said Isasi.
Isasi also claimed the Trump administration reportedly is considering allowing the so called “short term” plans to be renewed indefinitely. The proposed regulation will now be open for public comment for sixty days on regulations.gov.