On Thursday, Senate Republican leadership released their latest version of health care reform legislation entitled the “Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017.”
The revised bill includes Senator Cruz’s proposal (in brackets) to allow insurers under certain conditions to offer health plans that do not comply with the Affordable Care Act (ACA), provided they also offer at least one plan that is ACA-compliant.
The legislation provides $45 billion to combat opioid addiction, an additional $70 billion that states could use to help reduce premiums, and would allow individuals to use Health Savings Accounts to pay insurance premiums.
The bill retains the 3.8 percent tax on investment income and the 0.9 percent payroll tax, both of which would apply to individuals with incomes exceeding $200,000 and couples with incomes over $250,000.
The legislation also retains the $772 billion reduction in Medicaid spending over the next ten years.
Next week the Congressional Budget Office is expected to release its score of the revised bill. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell indicates that he intends for the full Senate to take up the revised legislation sometime next week.
The revised Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017 is available at https://www.budget.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/BetterCareJuly13.2017.pdf.