AMA unsupportive of new Senate healthcare bill

The Senate revealed an updated version of its revised healthcare bill on July 13, including key changes from earlier drafts. The biggest changes include:

 

• Allowing insurance companies to sell plans on state exchanges that don't comply with minimum coverage standards if they also offer plans that do comply
• People would be able to pay premiums with health savings accounts
• Retain investment income and payroll taxes on the wealthy
• Reserve $45 billion to combat opioid addiction
• Tax credits could purchase catastrophic insurance plans with low premiums and high deductibles

While President Donald Trump is pressuring Congress to get behind this new bill, not everyone is satisfied. The American Medical Association is against the bill, as it doesn't address Medicaid cuts and what the organization feels is inadequate subsidies provided to Americans who would lose their health insurance if the ACA is repealed.

"While stabilizing the individual market is an initial step, more bipartisan collaboration is needed in the months ahead to improve the delivery and financing of healthcare," said AMA President David O. Barbe, MD, in a statement.

He also applauded the additional funding to combat opioid addiction, but pointed out that individuals suffering from substance abuse often have additional healthcare needs that the bill doesn't address, and could be hurt by rolling back the Medicaid expansion.

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