With President Donald Trump’s new administration underway; one of the first issues he promised to tackle was the Affordable Care Act (ACA), known as Obamacare. In conjunction with the new session of Congress, today the Patient Freedom Act of 2017 was introduced by Senators Susan Collins of Maine and Bill Cassidy of Louisiana.
The proposed bill would ensure no gap in medical coverage for those covered under the Affordable Care Act.
The ACA, to date, has helped nearly 20 million Americans receive health coverage. While the healthcare law has been deemed as flawed, it is the largest overhaul to the private healthcare insurance market in modern history.
If Passed, How Will it Work
With the Patient Freedom Act of 2017, Americans who do not have access to health insurance, would be automatically enrolled in a standard high-deductible insurance plan, and, via tax subsidy, $5,000 would be deposited into a health savings account for an individual. The amount would be $10,000 for a married uninsured couple. The individuals would use the money to pay for, or off-set medical costs, deductibles and co-pays.
During one of his first official acts as president, Trump signed an executive order that eliminates the requirements of President Obama’s healthcare law. The new order gives agencies room to use discretion when it comes to enforcing the ACA mandates moving forward.
While the new president has not unveiled his complete plan for healthcare, the Patient Freedom Act of 2017 should serve as a stop-gap for insurance losses, should the ACA be repealed.