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House Republicans introduced their proposal for repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act, with age-based tax credits at its centerpiece. The legislation would also eliminate the individual and employer mandates as well as expand health savings accounts.
Republicans would offer tax credits that are based on age, not income-based as they are for the Obama Care exchanges. But they would be phased out starting with individuals earning more than $75,000 and for households making over $150,000. There would be no credits for individuals earning more than $215,000.
The legislation would keep the Medicaid expansion program running until 2020. As of Jan. 1, 2020, rolls would be frozen and Medicaid would be funded on a per capita basis vs. the fee-for-service model.
Plan repeals Obama Care taxes on upper-income earners, capital gains, insurance plans and medical device manufacturers. It would not tax employer-based coverage, as an earlier version had proposed. It does keep the “Cadillac Tax” on high-end insurance plans, but would delay implementing it until 2025.
The legislation would keep the ban on denying coverage to people with pre-existing conditions. It would repeal the individual mandate to get insurance, but would charge those who don’t keep continuous coverage a one-time renewal fee of up to 30% more. The plan would also eliminate the employer mandate to provide coverage.
Health Savings Accounts
The GOP bill would expand the annual contribution limit on health savings accounts tied with high-deductible insurance plans to $6,550 for an individual or $13,100 for a family. Health Equity (HQY), a major pure-play HSA provider, rose 1.5% in late trading.
What’s The Score?
Republicans do not say how many people would likely add or lose coverage as a result of the plan. The Congressional Budget Office has not released any estimates on costs.
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