This statement is the Protect Our Care Colorado coalition’s response to President Trump’s threat and the actions of HHS Secretary Price to hold the individual health insurance market hostage and take away Americans’ health care as part of a political ploy to make the Affordable Care Act (ACA) “explode.”
This statement can be attributed to Adam Fox, Director of Strategic Engagement of the Colorado Consumer Health Initiative except where otherwise indicated.
“This week, the Trump administration took a dangerous step to sabotage the individual insurance market and hold the health care of thousands of Coloradans hostage in a desperate attempt to pass a bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act. Trump threatened to withhold payments to insurers that help reduce out-of-pocket costs for over 35,000 hard-working Coloradans, which will cause insurers to drastically increase premiums or withdraw altogether from the individual market.”
“Rather than helping many hard-working people and reducing costs, Trump’s threat will directly lead to Coloradans either paying more for their health care or losing their health insurance entirely. Health insurers were already concerned about the uncertainty created with the talk of ACA repeal, and Trump just ratcheted up that uncertainty to an extreme,” said Christina Postolowski, Rocky Mountain Regional Director for Young Invincibles, a millennial research and advocacy organization.
“On the heels of the President’s statement, the administration also released its so-called market stabilization rules that increase the burden on consumers by shortening the amount of time people have to get enrolled, creating additional bureaucracy for people experiencing life changing events, making it harder for consumers to re-enroll after a gap in coverage, and reducing the value of health plans. These new rules will create additional enrollment barriers and further destabilize the health insurance market.”
“Between the President’s statements and the release of the new regulations, it is clear that the administration is doing what they can to undermine the law and the insurance market in Colorado and nationwide. The administration should be upholding the law — not sabotaging it. The Protect Our Care Colorado coalition strongly opposes these actions to gamble with the health insurance so many Coloradans rely upon. Colorado’s congressional delegation should do the same.”
Specifically, the President has said the administration may stop paying the ACA’s Cost-Sharing Reduction payments — which save consumers thousands of dollars a year — if Democrats won’t come to the bargaining table to discuss repeal. Average premiums would have to go up by 19 percent for silver plans if the cost-sharing payments were stopped. Trump’s reckless stunt could leave consumers without coverage, cause insurers to leave markets and destabilize the Affordable Care Act marketplaces.
Protect Our Care Colorado is a coalition of 44 organizations in Colorado advocating to protect the health care of Coloradans. To learn more the coalition, visit ProtectOurCareCo.org.