Recent Elections Will Bring Changes to Health Care
By: Jeremy A. Ball, Matthew M. Cobb and Ruth Levy
Donald Trump’s victory in the presidential election combined with Republicans maintaining control of both chambers of Congress has the potential to alter the health care landscape significantly. While little is certain in politics, President-elect Trump and Congressional Republicans have campaigned and pledged for health care reform to include the repeal and replacement of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
While lacking the 60 Senate votes necessary to fully repeal and replace the ACA, a Republican Congress and President can utilize the budget reconciliation process to repeal significant portions of the law. Earlier this year, Congress passed, and President Barack Obama promptly vetoed, the Restoring Americans’ Healthcare Freedom Reconciliation Act. This bill provides a possible roadmap for the initial Republican effort to repeal and disable portions of the ACA and included the following changes to the ACA:
Restrict the federal government from operating health insurance exchanges;
Phase out subsidy funding for individuals purchasing insurance through the health insurance exchanges;
Eliminate tax penalties for employers who do not provide health insurance plans;
Eliminate tax penalties for individuals who do not purchase health insurance;
Eliminate the Cadillac tax on certain employer health care plans;
Eliminate taxes on medical devices; and
Phase out Medicaid expansion over a two year period.