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The number of uninsured people in the U.S. will increase by 23 million by 2026 under the GOP-backed American Health Care Act.
That’s according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, which recently completed an analysis of the health care bill House Republicans passed earlier in May. That’s just 1 million fewer uninsured Americans than the CBO predicted with a previous version of the bill.
The CBO’s scorecard of the new legislation — which is aimed at significantly modifying or repealing many provisions of the Affordable Care Act, more commonly referred to as “Obamacare” — paints a grim picture of what Americans can expect if the bill passes the Senate.
“Millions more will be without insurance, plans will cover less, and rates could skyrocket for people with pre-existing conditions,” warns Consumer Reports in its report on the CBO’s analysis.
According to a CNBC report, if Obamacare remains law in the U.S., 28 million people total will be uninsured by 2026. If the GOP’s health care bill passes, the ranks of the uninsured will hit 51 million during that same timeframe. CNBC reports:
Most of the reductions in coverage would come from people on Medicaid, the joint federal-state program that covers primarily the poor, as well as from people enrolled in non-job-based private individual health plans.
The CBO says the AHCA would also reduce the federal deficit by $119 billion over the next decade and after some time, it could slightly lower average insurance premiums.
Here are two other highlights from the CBO’s analysis:
- Expect a hike in maternity, mental health and substance abuse treatment costs: “In particular, out-of-pocket spending on maternity care and mental health and substance abuse services could increase by thousands of dollars in a given year for the nongroup enrollees who would use those services,” CBO writes.
- People with pre-existing conditions would have to pay up: The CBO estimates that 54 million Americans live in states that would most likely opt to waive essential health benefit requirements and protections for Americans with pre-existing conditions. “In those states premiums would vary significantly based on your health and the types of benefits provided, leaving less healthy people with extremely high premiums.”
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