Inside the New Healthcare Bill

Tensions are high as Republicans are attempting to pass their new-and-improved replacement for the Obama administration’s ACA. Media outlets nationwide have been scrutinizing the workings of the bill, questioning how their changes will make healthcare more affordable. Many have, correctly, asserted that the middle classes will be on the receiving end of falling healthcare costs. A recent article by the New York Times visualized this (below). 

Although dependent upon the age bracket, data exhibits falling healthcare costs for the middle class for both younger and middle age groups. Citizens in the lower income brackets will see hikes in healthcare costs as federal subsidies for healthcare fall, as per the legislation’s content. As age increases, significant declines in the amount of money saved and increases in spending for low income beneficiaries are noticeable. Older populations will see increases in healthcare costs across the board, regardless of income bracket. 

Policymakers have made poorer Americans the focus of new changes. The new bill suggests increasing subsidies for this sector of the population in hopes that falling costs will boost enrollment. However, premiums are predicted to continue to be unaffordable and enrollment is expected to remain stable for individuals living near or below the poverty line.

Although Republicans claim that the goal of the legislation is to increase coverage and decrease costs, a combination of increased sticker price and decreased federal subsidies will leave swaths of the population with substandard or non-existent health insurance. As subsidies for health insurance fall, citizens will opt for less expensive plans, which are accompanied by higher deductibles. This means, simply, that health coverage is now more expensive and will cover less. 

Anna Graff


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