Home » Columnists » Trump administration cuts funding for health care sign-ups

Trump administration cuts funding for health care sign-ups

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 Trump administration is announcing sharp cuts in programs promoting health care enrollment under the Affordable Care Act for next year
Health and Human Services officials say advertising will be cut to $10 million for the 2018 open enrollment season
The Trump administration is announcing sharp cuts in programs promoting health care enrollment under the Affordable Care Act for next year.
Health and Human Services officials say advertising will be cut to $10 million for the 2018 open enrollment season. That’s down from $100 million for the 2017 sign-up season.
Funding for consumer helpers called “navigators” will also be cut, from $62.5 million for 2017, to about $36 million for next year.
Andy Slavitt, former Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services administrator under the Obama administration, said that the Trump administration’s decision to cut funding for navigators will hit hardest in poor, rural communities where insurers may not fill in the gap on outreach.
“These aren’t budget decisions … these are all funds that come out of user fees paid by the insurance companies. This wouldn’t cost the federal government a nickel,” said Slavitt. “They’re basically not going to not us the user fees … it’s hard to interpret this as anything other than being done out of spite.”
Administration officials say the government hasn’t gotten much bang for its buck as far as ACA advertising and the navigator program, with some enrollment centers signing up very few customers.
Democrats are likely to accuse the administration of trying to undermine the program, which President Donald Trump says is going to “implode.”
A number of states that operate their own insurance exchanges have extended the open enrollment period beyond the November 1 to December 15 period on the federal marketplace, healthcare.gov. California, Minnesota, Colorado and others have set January enrollment deadlines.
CMS’ decision to cut exchange advertising for next year comes just ahead of a September 5 deadline for insurers to submit final rate revisions for 2018. It underscores health insurers’ continuing concerns about the Trump administration’s commitment to promoting enrollment.
“Effective education ensures that consumers understand their coverage options and encourages broader participation of healthy individuals,” said Kristine Grow, spokeswoman for the Association of Health Insurance Plans, the industry’s lobbying group. “Marketing, outreach, and education are critical to ensure that all consumers are aware of the upcoming open enrollment period, understand new timelines, and enroll by the deadline.”
In addition to cutting funding for enrollment efforts, the Trump administration cut the enrollment period in half this year to just six weeks, compared to three months over the last few years.
“I think it’s their hope that at the end of the enrollment period that they can announce significantly lower enrollment. At least, that appears to be their hope. It that’s their objective, I’m sure they can achieve it,” Slavitt Said.
Consumer advocacy group Protect Our Care denounced the Trump administration’s move. “It’s one thing to tweet about your opposition to a law, it’s another to undermine it, sabotage it and refuse to do your duty,” the group said in a statement Thursday.
To choose right Medicare Supplement Plan, Medicare Advantage Plan or Medicare Prescription Drug plan contact Sudhir Mathuria @ 713-771-2900.


More news

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *