Trump proposes alternative to costly Obamacare policies

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The Trump administration made a move to allow health insurers to sell lower-cost, less-comprehensive medical plans, on Tuesday, a proposition that has congressional Democrats upset.

The plans would be sold as an alternative to ObamaCare plans, which require more benefits.

From Fox News: The proposed regulations would allow insurers to sell individual consumers “short-term” policies that can last up to 12 months, have fewer benefits, and come with lower premiums.

The plans also would come with a disclaimer that they don’t meet the Affordable Care Act’s consumer protection requirements, such as guaranteed coverage. Insurers could also charge consumers more if an individual’s medical history discloses health problems.

But at a time of rising premiums, Trump administration officials touted the option as a boost for those who need coverage but don’t qualify for the Affordable Care Act’s subsidies and would otherwise face paying the full premium cost.

According to the report, Democratic leaders on Capitol Hill say the Trump administration is trying to allow for the sale of “junk” policies.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said in a statement, “Americans purchasing these shoddy, misleading short-term Trumpcare plans will be one diagnosis away from disaster, discovering they have been paying for coverage that may not cover basic care such as cancer treatment, preventative care or maternity care.”

The administration’s proposal will be open for public comment for 60 days. However, for 2018, short-term coverage won’t count as qualifying coverage under the Obama health law, which means consumers with such plans would legally be considered uninsured, putting them at risk of fines.

The repeal of the individual mandate does not take effect until next year.    

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