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GOP health care bill hurts poor

20 March 2017, 11:42 | Winifred Adams

"We believe we should have even more assistance. for that person in their 50s and 60s because they experience higher health care costs", Ryan told Fox News Sunday. Per Reuters, Ryan says that Republicans are massaging the bill to include work requirements for able-bodied Medicaid recipients and allow federal block grants.

Ryan said Republican leaders still planned to bring the healthcare bill to a vote on the House of Representatives floor on Thursday. But it wasn't clear until Sunday that the change would take the form of more financial assistance for seniors - rather than, say, moving the bill in an even more conservative direction, as some House Republicans have demanded.

Later on Sunday, Ryan told Fox News that he was optimistic about the chances of passing the plan. Republicans hold a majority in the chamber but can not afford to have more than 21 defections for the measure to pass.

Other Republicans, however, voiced concerns about the plan, with Senator Rand Paul predicting it would not pass through Congress. "I stand by my principles that healthcare reform must lower costs, increase quality, and ensure that rural populations have access to care", Thompson said.

Those fears were stoked last week by a Congressional Budget Office analysis that forecasted a short-term increase in premiums under the GOP law, and while premiums are expected to drop by roughly 10 percent over a 10-year horizon, some older and low-income people would face massive premium hikes.

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In the Senate, where Republicans hold a narrow 52-48 majority, prospects for the GOP bill also were uncertain as both moderates and conservatives criticized it.

Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick, R-Pa., who represents a suburban Philadelphia district that has been heavily targeted by Democrats, said in a Facebook post that he was most concerned that the legislation would roll back efforts to prevent and treat opioid abuse.

"We have to do something about the fact that the House bill disproportionately affects older, rural Americans", Republican Senator Susan Collins of ME said on NBC's "Meet the Press" on Sunday.

Under Obamacare, insurers can charge only three times more.

The BlueCross BlueShield Association emphasized the need for the replacement to be affordable when the draft of the healthcare bill was released earlier this month. "It's that your plan makes it unaffordable for people".



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