June 5, 2018/Press Release

ICYMI: Washington Post Editorial Board: Health care is still a mess. Republicans are making it worse.

COLUMBIA, Mo. — The Washington Post Editorial Board wrote today that according to new projections from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), “the nation still faces huge cost and coverage challenges, and Republicans are making some of the direst problems worse.” The Editorial Board made it clear that Republican sabotage will leave an estimated 35 million uninsured by 2027 — an increase of 5 million from the last time the CBO ran the same numbers.

From The Washington Post:

The Congressional Budget Office, Congress’s official scorekeeper, released last month a bevy of new projections about health-care coverage in the United States. The upshot is that the nation still faces huge cost and coverage challenges, and Republicans are making some of the direst problems worse.

…29 million people, about 11 percent of the nonelderly population, lack health insurance. In 10 years, that number will have risen to 35 million. The CBO’s 2027 estimate is about 5 million more people than the last time it ran the numbers.

Why the changed prediction? Because Republicans are sabotaging Obamacare. Between this year and next, an additional 3 million people will go without coverage because Republicans repealed the law’s individual mandate, which will drive healthy people out of the market and premiums up by an additional 10 percent. Another 3 million will lack insurance after a couple more years because of this effect.

…A quarter of insurance buyers currently have only one insurer to choose from, a problem that could be made worse if the Trump administration’s sabotage efforts compel more insurance companies to pull out.

The CBO warns of the “substantial uncertainty” still roiling the market — the result, in our view, of purposeful mismanagement or incompetence on the part of the Trump administration and congressional Republicans. “That uncertainty may affect insurers’ decisions to participate in the nongroup market in future years, and such withdrawals could threaten market stability in some areas of the country.”

An election year might be an inconvenient time for Congress to reenter the health-care debate and shore up the system. But when those who end up uncovered get into a car accident or receive a cancer diagnosis, the prospect will be far more severe than inconvenience. Bipartisan groups of lawmakers should be able to agree on market-stabilizing programs such as reinsurance, now. Republicans who voted for the calamitous tax bill, which included the individual-mandate repeal, have a particular duty to repair the damage they have done.