Trumpcare hurts millions

During the campaign Donald Trump promised better, cheaper healthcare for all Americans.

Every step he has taken since he took office flies in the face of that promise.

Republican bills to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA/Obamacare) allowed insurance companies to deny coverage for pre-existing conditions, to impose lifetime caps on coverage, and to sell junk insurance that did not cover essential services.

The bills also destroyed Medicaid, changing it from a guaranteed coverage program for low income and elderly Americans to block grants with no certain funding.

The Congressional Budget Office estimated as many as

30 million Americans would lose coverage under those bills and premiums would rise by as much as 60 percent for those over 60. Unable to pass those bills, Trump chose to sabotage the ACA.

He has reduced the enrollment period, is taking the website down every Sunday for “maintenance,” and is defunding programs to advertise open enrollment and assist Americans in choosing health insurance.

This past week he took two additional measures designed to undermine the ACA.

He authorized the selling of junk insurance which will drive the healthiest people out of the marketplace and drive premiums up for those remaining.

More devastating is his decision to stop paying the cost sharing provisions for lower income Americans struggling to pay deductibles and co-pays.

Today, the Pennsylvania Insurance Department announced that, because of this last action, it has approved premium increases averaging 30.6 percent for 2018 instead of the expected 7.6 percent.

Was Obamacare perfect? No.

But Trumpcare will deprive health insurance to millions of Americans and drive up costs for millions more.

Helen M. Sheehy, Tyrone

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