ADEA Washington Update

ACA Replacement Promises “Access,” Not Guaranteed Coverage

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In a mid-January interview with the Washington Post, then President-elect Donald Trump affirmed that he wanted the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to be replaced with a plan that includes “insurance for everybody.”

“There was a philosophy in some circles that if you can’t pay for [health insurance], you don’t get it. That’s not going to happen with us,” he added without going into specifics.

Since hearing those remarks, Republican leaders have attempted to reframe the language used to describe President Trump’s plan for replacing the ACA. Automatic coverage for everyone irrespective of their ability to pay for health insurance is not a part of the other plans put forth so far by the GOP. Senator John Thune (R-SD) stated “[W]e think everybody ought to have access to affordable health care insurance. I assume that’s what [Trump] means by that statement and that’s how we’re proceeding.”

Similar sentiments, emphasizing access instead of guaranteed coverage, have been echoed by Bill Cassidy (R-LA), Rand Paul (R-KY), Susan Collins (R-ME) and other GOP senators who are drafting ACA replacement plans.

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