The CBO says the Senate GOP healthcare bill would leave 22 million more without insurance
- Premiums would increase in 2018 and 2019 compared with the current baseline but decline after. According to the CBO, premiums would be 20% more than under current law in 2018 and 10% more in 2019. In 2020 and beyond, the change in the risk pool, with older and poorer Americans most likely priced out, would bring these premiums down.
- Deductibles and out-of-pocket costs would increase substantially. The benchmark plan on the individual insurance market would have an actuarial value of 58%, meaning insurance would be obligated to cover 58% of total costs. That is down from the current 70% benchmark value. According to the CBO, that would open the door for higher deductibles and out-of-pocket costs.
"Under current law for a single policyholder in 2017, the average deductible (for medical and drug expenses combined) is about $6,000 for a bronze plan and $3,600 for a silver plan," the CBO said, adding that it and the Joint Committee on Taxation "expect that the benchmark plans under this legislation would have high deductibles similar to those for the bronze plans offered under current law."
- The newly added waiting-period provision would lead slightly more people to maintain coverage. The provision, added to the bill on Monday, would make anyone who did not maintain coverage in the prior year wait six months before being able to access coverage benefits if they signed up the following year.
"Imposing that waiting period would, CBO and JCT expect, slightly increase the number of people with insurance, on net, throughout the 2018-2026 period — but not in 2019, when the incentives to obtain coverage would be weak because premiums would be relatively high," the CBO said.
- Individual insurance markets would remain stable. The last version of the House healthcare bill would have made unstable the markets for people purchasing insurance not through an insurer or government program like Medicaid, the CBO said, but the Senate bill would not destabilize these markets.