Senate Health Care Bill Would Leave 22 Million Without Insurance

The Senate health care plan revealed last week would result in 22 million fewer Americans with health care insurance by 2026, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO), which released its analysis of the bill on Monday, June 26.

The bulk of the insurance coverage losses would stem from deep cuts to the federal Medicaid program, which home health care groups have spoken out against. Medicaid expansion under Obamacare has increased access to home health care and personal care benefits and health insurance coverage for caregivers over the last several years.

The bill would reduce Medicaid spending 26% by 2026, compared to the current health care law, CBO found. This year, Medicaid spending is expected to reach $389 billion. The Medicaid cuts in the bill are the “main concern” in health care reform, according to The National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC).

By comparison, the House version of the health care bill, dubbed the American Health Care Act (AHCA), is estimated to leave 23 million more people uninsured with roughly $800 billion in Medicaid spending cuts over the next decade.

By 2018, 15 million more people would be uninsured under the Senate Republican plan than under the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

With the new CBO score available to the public, the Senate bill is likely headed to a vote this week, before Congressional members break for the July 4 recess. The bill is likely to undergo some changes before it comes to a vote.

“It is important to note that what has been released will likely undergo changes in the coming days, and potentially weeks as Senate Republican Leadership works to round up the necessary 50 votes to pass this legislation via the Budget Reconciliation legislative maneuver,” NAHC posted on its website on Monday prior to CBO’s release of its analysis.

Written by Amy Baxter