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Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Higgins says CBO score confirms health care bill is bad for those in need

All WNY News     Wednesday, May 24, 2017    

STAFF REPORTS
news@allwnynews.com



Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26), a member of the House of Representatives Committees on Budget and Ways and Means, said the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) cost estimate of the American Health Care Act (AHCA) reaffirms that the Republican bill to replace the Affordable Care Act fails to provide adequate access to affordable health care for millions of Americans.

"This CBO score tells us what we already knew: that this bill is bad generally and worse for those who need health coverage most," said Higgins.  "The AHCA is an assault on hard-working Americans who play by the rules and simply want to know that when they or their family member gets sick or injured, insurance will be there to cover their needs in a way that keeps access to care affordable."

Today's CBO score:

  • CBO and the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) estimate that, in 2018, 14 million more people would be uninsured under the GOP healthcare bill than under current law.
  • The increase in the number of uninsured people relative to the number projected under current law would reach 19 million in 2020 and 23 million in 2026.
  • In 2026, an estimated 51 million people under age 65 would be uninsured, compared with 28 million who would lack insurance that year under current law.
  • The GOP healthcare bill would "increase premiums before 2020, relative to those under current law—by an average of about 20 percent in 2018 and 5 percent in 2019, as the funding provided by the act to reduce premiums had a larger effect on pricing."
  • The AHCA would cut Medicaid and health care subsidy programs by $1.1 trillion, and cut taxes (primarily for the rich) by $900 billion.
Higgins voted against the AHCA and was outspoken about the failings of the bill, including diminished protections for those with pre-existing conditions, outrageous tax breaks for wealthy health insurance executives,  higher costs for older Americans, and the elimination of essential benefits which range from prescription drug costs to hospitalization.

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