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Trump to end key health-care subsidies, likely threatening marketplaces

Friday - 13/10/2017 08:29
Cost-sharing payments that help lower-income consumers afford health plans will end, said two people briefed on the matter. The move could prompt insurers to withdraw from the marketplaces created by the Affordable Care Act. Earlier, the president signed an executive order that makes it easier to buy a long-disputed type of health insurance with fewer benefits and weaker government protections.

President Trump's executive order on health care could have ripple effects throughout the Affordable Care Act's marketplaces. Here's what you need to know. (Video: Jenny Starrs/Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post)

 


President Trump is throwing a bomb into the insurance marketplaces created under the Affordable Care Act, choosing to end critical payments to health insurers that help millions of lower-income Americans afford coverage. The decision coincides with an executive order on Thursday to allow alternative health plans that skirt the law’s requirements.

The White House confirmed late Thursday that it would halt federal payments for cost-sharing reductions, although a statement did not specify when. Another statement a short time later by top officials at the Health and Human Services Department said the cutoff would be immediate. The subsidies total about $7 billion this year.

Trump has threatened for months to stop the payments, which go to insurers that are required by the law to help eligible consumers afford their deductibles and other out-of-pocket expenses. But he held off while other administration officials warned him such a move would cause an implosion of the ACA marketplaces that could be blamed on Republicans, according to two individuals briefed on the decision.

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Source: Washington Post:

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