|What We're Reading|
This week’s reads help us as we prepare for this time next week, when there will be a new president and the healthcare universe will once again be turned upside down as Congress and the Trump Administration seek to make good on their promises to repeal and replace the ACA.|
-CMS released its latest enrollment figures this week, including a file with enrollment by ZIP and financial assistance. More than 11.5 million consumers enrolled in coverage as of December 24, an increase of nearly 300,000 compared with the same period last year.
-The Commonwealth Fund and George Washington University's health policy research center released a report claiming that repealing the ACA’s tax credits and Medicaid expansion would lead to a loss of 2.6 million jobs in 2019, of which roughly a million are in the healthcare sector.
-Utah Governor Gary Herbert (R) sent a letter to House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy warning Congress not to repeal the ACA’s individual mandate as it would “further erode the individual market,” and also calling them to maintain the law’s cost-sharing subsidies.
-Healthcare consumer advocate Tim Jost published this list of ways the Trump Administration can begin to dismantle the ACA without the help of Congress.
-Here are some things that many aren’t talking about that could be repealed under the ACA.
-Tom Price is a likely shoo-in for HHS secretary, but his confirmation hearing will not go without fireworks, including this new report of on his preferential buys on healthcare stocks as he was working on legislation that impacted them. Price has since promised to divest himself if confirmed as secretary.
-A third of the Republican governors who expanded their state’s Medicaid program are urging Congress not to repeal that provision. At the same time, Republican governors who didn’t embrace the ACA don’t want to be hurt either.
-Senate Republicans rejected a non-binding amendment to the budget that would have saved the ACA’s provision of allowing children to stay on their parents’ plan until age 26, but that doesn’t mean that it is necessarily going away.
-In his press conference this week, Trump strongly advocated a long-held Democratic position of prescription drug price negotiation, which has put him at odds with virtually all members of his party in Congress.
-Trump’s comment that repeal and replace must happen simultaneously puts pressure on Senate Republicans to find compromise with Democrats, as to enact a comprehensive replacement, they would need at least eight Democratic votes for passage.-Coming to D.C. for the inauguration? Tickets are still available for many of the night’s inaugural balls.
-There’s a lot of debate over how much a standard serving of Nutella should be.
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