When it comes to health care, Trump’s budget cuts are bad news for Medicaid, experts say
- by admin
A Republican congressional budget office has warned that cuts to the nation’s health care system are likely to drive up the costs of coverage for millions of low-income Americans.
The Office of Management and Budget said Tuesday that cuts would push up average premiums for Medicaid beneficiaries by at least 25 percent and drive up costs of covering low- and moderate-income adults, especially those with pre-existing conditions.
It’s the first time the CBO has warned of the possible impact of the Trump budget plan on Medicaid coverage, which has grown under President Barack Obama.
It said Medicaid would have to absorb $8.6 billion in extra federal spending to keep up with rising costs and to offset the impact of rising Medicaid payments.
“These are not just budget cuts, these are actually cuts to Medicaid, to Medicare, to the Children’s Health Insurance Program, to Medicaid’s other programs,” said Kevin Drum, director of the Kaiser Family Foundation’s Health Policy Program.
“And if you look at how many states have tried to implement Medicaid reforms that actually would have helped, it’s been almost non-existent.
The number of states that have done that is probably in the range of 20 to 40.”
Drum said the budget office’s analysis is not a “fantasy,” but is based on a conservative estimate of how many people would be affected by the proposed cuts to state Medicaid programs.
He added that even though the budget Office did not make the estimates in its latest assessment, the CBO’s analysis of the plan does not support the administration’s claims of its impact on Medicaid.
The CBO report comes a day after House Democrats announced they would push to repeal and replace Obamacare and move ahead with their own plan to repeal it.
The nonpartisan Office of Congressional Budgeting has forecast that the House GOP plan would add $2.4 trillion to the national debt over the next decade, with many states and communities facing the biggest hit.
But the GOP plan does little to tackle the underlying problems, including the high cost of medical care, and has not included any new investments in programs such as Medicaid, which many Americans rely on for critical care and long-term care.
“The Trump administration has been out of touch with the reality of our current health care systems, and the American people, for decades,” said Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., the ranking Democrat on the Senate Budget Committee.
“That means the American public will continue to bear the cost of the ACA’s failings.”
Democrats have been pushing for a budget plan to replace Obamacare for years, and they have found little support from Republicans.
Trump has repeatedly said the GOP budget proposal will save the federal government $1 trillion over the decade, a claim that has been repeatedly debunked by independent experts and the Congressional Budget Office.
A Republican congressional budget office has warned that cuts to the nation’s health care system are likely to drive up…