Friday Five - August 18, 2017

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August 17, 2017

In this week’s Friday Five, MAXIMUS is reading about how the future of health insurance exchanges and government-sponsored health programs are uncertain, causing many current Medicaid beneficiaries to fear losing their coverage. That said, historically bipartisan support for the popular CHIP program could lead to a ceasefire in the congressional healthcare war. As Congress looks past the healthcare debate, some are looking to consolidate and streamline the delivery of safety net services across 92 federal programs.

1. CBO: ObamaCare premiums could rise 20 percent if Trump ends payments

Premium prices for individuals purchasing insurance on the Affordable Care Act healthcare exchanges are still in flux, as Trump has not yet committed to providing insurers with cost-sharing reduction payments. In this article from The Hill, the CBO estimates that premiums would rise 20% if insurers were informed by the end of August that payments would cease in 2018.  

2. Why ACA market upheaval still looms large despite failure to repeal the law 

Despite the failure to repeal and replace the ACA, what, if any, changes will occur is still up in the air. The Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) must be reauthorized in September, and this article from Healthcare Dive predicts additional discussion on cost-sharing reduction payments, efforts to weaken the ACA, waiver requests, and the proposal of bipartisan legislation.

3. In Florida, Medicaid is a matter of life and death

The US News and World Report finds that complicated enrollment, stringent eligibility, and uncertainty around funding are limiting access to Medicaid. An additional 800,000 Floridians would have insurance if the state had expanded Medicaid. With the current political climate, residents are concerned about access to and quality of care for both Medicaid and Medicare recipients. 

4. Kids could start a ceasefire in healthcare wars 

This Huffington Post opinion piece urges Congress to reauthorize funding for CHIP, which has historically seen bipartisan support. Due to CHIP, 95% of children have health insurance coverage and the program is relatively inexpensive. According to this author, Congress’ decision to continue the program is a no-brainer for the sake of millions of children across the country.

5. Congressmen Jordan, Davidson pushing welfare reform plan

Two Ohio Congressmen are proposing a review and consolidation of the 92 federal means-tested programs, reports the Dayton Daily News. They support establishing a bipartisan panel that would consolidate or eliminate programs, as needed, to provide a more streamlined system.