Broad Coalition of Health Industry Groups Calls for Obamacare Expansion

In an unusual display of unity, groups representing almost all the major players in the American health care system – hospitals, doctors, insurance companies and employers – urged Congress to embrace President Biden’s broader vision of building on the Affordable Care Act Joining forces to do. Reach long elusive goal of universal coverage.

The alliance is made up of eight powerful industry groups, including the US Health Insurance Plan, the American Medical Association, and the US Chamber of Commerce. It released a wide set of proposals on Wednesday morning, including an increase in available federal subsidies to help give coverage to people and more of them to help states re-establish a three-year liberal match in federal funding. Included to expand its Medicaid to entice. Program. The coalition urged the government to spend more money on hiring people in schemes proposed by insurance markets established under the law, which were removed by the previous administration.

The coalition said in a joint statement, “While we sometimes disagree on important issues in health care, we are in total agreement that Americans deserve a stable health care market that provides access to high quality care and affordable coverage Does. “

Some offers are also included Federal subsidy increase, Is already under discussion as part of a broader Kovid-19 relief bill and has long been on the list of proposals made by groups by Congress.

The decision to work together was fueled by the epidemic, the coalition said, and “from long-standing disparities in health care use and the need to address disparities in health outcomes.” Millions of Americans lost their insurance during the recession, and the virus has inconsistently affected communities of color that have experienced high numbers of cases and deaths.

These recommendations indicate a strong showing of support for health care legislation that occurred not only under fierce attacks from Republicans under the Trump administration, but also from progressive Democrats who called it a government-run “medical for all” With the urge to change completely.

Whereas hospitals, doctors and insurers, who benefit from having more people coverage, were previously united Fight efforts The new coalition also included Chambers, who was not a proponent of the law, to repeal Obamacare by Republicans in 2017.

“We have always believed that there are better approaches to expanding healthcare and reducing costs than the ACA, but this is the law of the ground and as such we wish it could work smoothly and efficiently,” Neil Bradley , Executive vice president and chief policy officer for the chamber, said in an email statement.

“Now we really have an opportunity to see something,” said Mr. Biden’s election and the change in congressional structure, said Chip Kahn, president of the Federation of American Hospitals, which represents for-profit hospitals and, the American Hospital Association , Is a member of the alliance with. In addition to the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Family Physicians is also a member of the coalition.

“This is a very specific set of proposals for the ACA framework to meet its aspirations,” Mr. Kahan said.

The coalition now estimates that 29 million working-age people remain unaffected, and states that the proposed measure is a way to achieve universal universal coverage.

“We had to work hard with all the partners for the coalition to get the route we need to expand coverage,” said Justin Hendelman, senior vice president of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. Member of the alliance.

Employer groups, including the American Benefits Council, specifically support temporary measures that will help people maintain their job-based coverage during the epidemic. The coalition is calling for higher subsidies under COBRA, federal law that allows people to retain health benefits provided by employers after they leave jobs, so that people can afford to keep those job-based plans Or employers to provide loans directly to the federal government.

“It’s really all about the current system and detecting gaps and issues,” said Janet Thornton, a senior vice president of Health Insurance Plans of America. All of the recommendations “are about filling those gaps,” she said.

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