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Tax bill impacts on Health coverage and Medicare

Sudhir Mathuria  Licensed  Professional Health Life 360 6776 Southwest Freeway, Suite # 178 Houston TX 77074 713-771-2900 www.MyMedicarePlanning.com

Sudhir Mathuria
Licensed Professional
Health Life 360
6776 Southwest Freeway, Suite # 178
Houston TX 77074
713-771-2900
www.MyMedicarePlanning.com

The tax overhaul Republicans are pushing toward final votes in Congress could undermine the Affordable Care Act’s health insurance markets and add to the financial squeeze on Medicare over time.
Lawmakers will meet this week to resolve differences between the House- and Senate-passed bills in hopes of getting a finished product to President Donald Trump’s desk around Christmas. Also in play are the tax deduction for people with high medical expenses, and a tax credit for drug companies that develop treatments for serious diseases affecting relatively few patients.
The business tax cuts that are the centerpiece of the legislation would benefit many health care companies, but there’s also concern among hospitals, doctors and insurers about the impact on coverage. Here are some questions and answers on how the tax bill intersects with health care:
Q: Trump has said he won’t cut Medicare, and the program doesn’t even seem to be mentioned in the tax bill. Why is AARP saying that health insurance for seniors could be jeopardized?
A: The tax bill would increase federal deficits by about $1 trillion over 10 years, even after accounting for stronger economic growth expected from tax cuts. More red ink means higher borrowing costs for the government, and that would reduce the options for policymakers when Medicare’s long-postponed financial reckoning comes due.
Medicare’s giant fund for inpatient care isn’t expected to start running short until 2029. That’s still more than a decade away, but a federal anti-deficit law currently in effect could trigger automatic cuts as early as next year — about $25 billion from Medicare.
Q: How did “Obamacare” wind up in the tax bill?
A: The Senate version repeals the Affordable Care Act’s tax penalties on people who don’t have health insurance. That would result in government savings from fewer consumers applying for taxpayer-subsidized coverage, giving GOP tax writers nearly $320 billion over 10 years to help pay for tax cuts.
What’s more, repealing the fines would deal a blow to the Obama-era health law after a more ambitious Republican takedown collapsed earlier this year.
Q: Those fines have been very unpopular, so how could repealing them undermine the health law? Other parts of the ACA will remain on the books.
A: Premiums will go up, and that’s never popular. The fines were meant to nudge healthy people to get covered. Because insurance markets work by pooling risks, premiums from healthy people subsidize care for the sick.
Q: So just taking away an unpopular penalty would destabilize the health insurance law?
A: Repealing the fines is part of a broader context. The Trump administration slashed the advertising budget for ACA sign-ups this year, at the same time that it cut the enrollment window in half. The administration is working on rules that would allow broader sale of skimpy insurance plans with lower premiums, which would also draw healthy people away from the health law markets.
To choose right Medicare Supplement Plan, Medicare Advantage Plan or Medicare Prescription plan or Obamacare Plan contact Sudhir Mathuria @ 713-771-2900.


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