So where is the president’s plan on health reform? Much of it is right before our eyes, actually.
While the Democratic presidential candidates slug it out on the debate stage, the Trump administration is making important progress in achieving many of the goals the American people want in health reform—giving them more choices of more affordable coverage and care.
“When people say, ‘What’s the plan?’ We’ve done so much…There have already been a lot of profound actions,” former presidential advisor Brian Blase, now a Senior Fellow at the Galen Institute, told Politico in this report.
Brian’s new paper for Galen, Health Reform Progress Beyond Repeal and Replace, is the road map showing changes so far. And another report produced under his leadership at the White House shows the architecture of the administration’s targeted approach to reform: Reforming America’s Health Care System Through Choice and Competition.
Brian writes in National Review that three major rule changes—expanding coverage through Association Health Plans, short-term limited-duration insurance, and Health Reimbursement Arrangements—have transformative potential. These rules, combined with Congress eliminating the penalty associated with the ACA’s individual mandate, are enhancing consumer choices of coverage, devolving some insurance regulatory oversight away from Washington to states, and making health insurance subsidies fairer.
Galen Senior Fellow Doug Badger provides more data to prove the point in a new paper for Heritage and related post, Obamacare Caused Premiums to Spike. Here’s How States Are Lowering Them Again.
Doug follows closely the progress by states that are taking advantage of waivers that use existing Obamacare dollars to provide stronger subsidies for people with high health costs while lowering premiums for other consumers. Premiums in waiver states fell by a median of more than 7%, while median premiums in the other 44 states and D.C. rose by more than 3%, he writes.
And what is Congress up to? Doug reports about a reform proposal from House Democrats that would spend more taxpayer dollars to cover a diminishing number of people with Obamacare policies: Congressional Proposals to Increase Federal Health Care Spending:A Flawed Approach, Building on Failure. And on the hot issue of prescription drug pricing, he outlines Good and Bad Ideas in the Senate’s Medicare Drug Bill. He calls on Congress to improve the successful Part D prescription drug benefit program, not sabotage it with a battery of price controls.