Those advocating for universal health coverage know very well that resources are limited, and that costs must be contained. They also understand that the burgeoning bureaucracy must be well paid. So the answer is to cut services. Some plans “incentivize” doctors to make more money by skimping on care. Others call for a “global budget”—the deliberate creation of scarcity. When the money is gone, treatment is canceled. There will be fewer beds, fewer CT scanners, fewer drugs, and fewer doctors. But all will be fair. No rationing by price, just by waiting lines, political pull—and death. There will be no medical bills to pay after a service, if you get any service. Only taxes in advance, service or no service.

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The Trump administration took another step Wednesday toward deregulating federal insurance exchanges created under the Affordable Care Act.

For coverage in 2018, consumers can buy an ACA-approved plan directly from a broker or an insurer’s website instead of having to go through HealthCare.gov, the CMS announced. The news comes just two days after small businesses were given permission to skip the federal marketplace to sign their employees up for SHOP coverage.

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Now that the House of Representatives passed a revised version of the American Health Care Act (AHCA) to replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA) the ball is in the Senate’s court.  Despite calls to start from scratch, the Senate would be well advised to work off the structure of the AHCA. AHCA provides a solid foundation that could be improved with some tweaks. It repeals the ACA’s unpopular individual and employer mandates and penalties but preserves its well-liked protections for people with pre-existing conditions, the ban on lifetime coverage caps, coverage for children up to age 26 on their parents’ insurance and coverage of essential health benefits.

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Large employers are reexamining health care delivery systems and are looking for a more competitive marketplace, according to a new paper from the American Health Policy Institute. With health care policy front page news, it should be noted that the federal government is not the only institution taking a hard look at the subject and deciding whether changes are merited. Large employers who provide health care benefits to more than 170 million Americans are also reexamining current delivery systems. The paper illustrates longstanding concerns of large employers that have been intensified by the debate on the ACA, such as the lack of strong tools providing purchasers and consumers of health care with the information they need to evaluate the quality, cost, and effectiveness of the services being provided.

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The Trump administration is examining whether it’s legally permissible to keep funding Obamacare subsidies for low-income people, but “there’s a desire” to include them in the Republican health-care bill, a top White House health-care adviser told Bloomberg BNA.

The individual market won’t be stable unless Congress passes the Republicans’ American Health Care Act, Brian Blase, special assistant to the president in the National Economic Council, said in a May 12 interview with Bloomberg BNA. Anthem Inc., a major carrier in the Affordable Care Act exchanges, told White House officials that large premium increases it has requested for 2018 are based on the assumption that the cost-sharing reduction (CSR) subsidies will be paid, Blase said.

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Bipartisan talks to repair Obamacare are gaining traction among a group of Senate moderates. At least three moderate Democrats held an initial sit-down with half a dozen Republicans late Monday evening — the most tangible sign yet of centrists’ interest in finding common ground.

Republican leaders “recognize that there is a lot of interest in this issue — that it’s extremely important and that it’s obvious that members are going to talk to one another about it,” said Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), who organized the meeting with Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.).

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The Department of Health and Human Services on Tuesday released a checklist for states that choose to seek waivers from certain Obamacare requirements.

Through the waivers, commonly known as “innovation waivers” or 1332 waivers, states can ask the federal government to allow them to set up high-risk pools, reinsurance programs or another proposal that would reduce costs for customers or allow for more people to be covered.

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The American Health Care Act eliminates Obamacare’s taxes and mandates that are crushing small businesses in my home state of Tennessee and around the country. It is a once-in-a-generation entitlement reform, saving and strengthening Medicaid so that it can continue to serve the most vulnerable Americans but doesn’t incentivize a culture of dependency. And it brings free-market competition into the health care marketplace to bring down costs and improve the quality of care while continuing to protect those with pre-existing conditions.

Creating good policy in Congress is not always easy, and we never get everything we want. That’s why this bill is far from perfect. But it is a good first step and this is a particularly proud moment for me.

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Some Republican leaders in Congress are trying to pass legislation rolling back and replacing key features of the ACA without securing any Democratic support in the effort. The ACA was passed in 2010 with only Democratic votes, and that is a major reason the law remains politically and, to a degree, programmatically unstable. The Democratic Party has lost numerous seats at the federal and state levels of government since the ACA was enacted. It would be better for the United States if a broad consensus could be reached on health care. A bill that passed with support from some Republicans and some Democrats has a better chance of political survival than a bill passed by just one party.

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New York’s health insurers will request double-digit rate increases for ObamaCare policies for 2018 while debate rages in Washington on overhauling the law, analysts told The Post.

The insurers officially submit their rate plans to state regulators on Monday.

Last year, the state Department of Financial Services approved an average 16.6 percent hike for individual policies and an average 8.3 percent for small group policies on the state’s ObamaCare exchange — the highest in four years.

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