Larry Levitt

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Last quote by Larry Levitt

These waivers are an intriguing opportunity for states to access federal funds for reinsurance arrangements that can lower premiums. States would still have to kick in some money of their own, but those state funds would leverage federal dollars. However, the timing of this push for states to submit waivers under the ACA is somewhat odd, given that the administration is pushing to repeal and replace the law at the same time.feedback
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May 16 2017 Obamacare
Larry Levitt has been quoted 73 times. The one recent article where Larry Levitt has been quoted is G.O.P. Bill Could Affect Employer Health Coverage, Too. Most recently, Larry Levitt was quoted as having said, “Lifetime limits affect very few people. It allows you to lower your costs without affecting very many people.”.
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Larry Levitt quotes

I think insurers needed a clear signal yesterday. Actuaries are working away on their spreadsheets right now, and with each passing day the uncertainty and lack of clarity increases the chances of insurers exiting.feedback

There's a tension here for the White House between avoiding a crisis in the insurance markets and facilitating the collapse of a program they bitterly oppose.feedback

This type of waiver may make it easier for states to implement reinsurance programs or high-risk pools to help stabilize their individual insurance markets.feedback

The ACA marketplaces weren't collapsing, but they could be made to collapse through administrative actions.feedback

The administration could do everything from actively undermining the law to trying to reshape it to moving it in a more conservative direction.feedback

It's almost certainly the case that repealing benefit requirements would raise the cost of the AHCA since more people would use tax credits.feedback

The GOP bill makes coverage less affordable for lower-income people, especially older adults, who are more likely to be sick. Making health insurance truly accessible requires two steps. One is guaranteeing access for people with pre-existing conditions, which this bill does. The other is making coverage affordable for people, and in that respect it's a step backwards relative to the ACA.feedback

If it's used to subsidize insurers, it could go a long way towards offsetting the destabilizing effect of repealing the individual mandate, as CBO suggested. States have many potential uses for the funds, and I'm sure the lobbying at the state level would be intense. The beneficial effects of the fund are diminished over time as the funding scales down and states have to start putting up significant matching funds, which could discourage some states from accessing the money. These are also appropriated funds, so there's no guarantee they'd continue beyond 2026.feedback

The stabilization fund represents a substantial amount of money.feedback

Medicaid has been a profit center for many insurers, and those profits could be threatened if Medicaid is capped.feedback

This report is a reminder that while there's a big debate in Washington about the future of the Affordable Care Act, the law remains in place for now and is covering millions of people.feedback

I don't think there is anything in this bill that makes the market a lot more attractive to insurers.feedback

The federal and state marketplaces would likely shrink.feedback

Reinsurance is a form of cross-subsidization, in that taxpayers are covering the cost of people with high health costs, lowering premiums for everyone in the insurance pool.feedback

There's nothing in this bill that would seem to lower the cost of health insurance.feedback

That could encourage some healthy people to sign up initially.feedback

Insurers kind of want the threat that they may pull out to be taken seriously now, so that they get some of the changes they are looking for.feedback

No insurer wants the negative public backlash from dropping insurance for lots of people, but the companies need to feel like the market is stable and that there's a chance of making money.feedback

The clock is definitely ticking for the Trump administration to provide some clarity around what the rules will be.feedback

State-based marketplaces were able to communicate with potential enrollees in a clearer and more nuanced way about their options with the law's benefits and requirements still in place.feedback

While the Trump Administration pulled outreach ads as the open-enrollment period ended, state marketplaces were continuing to market to potential new enrollees. With so much churn in the insurance market as people's circumstances change, constant outreach is necessary to keep enrollment up. There has been enormous uncertainty about the future of the ACA follow long the election. The messages out of Washington were that the law will be repealed quickly and replaced.feedback

While enrollment is down, this does not exactly paint a picture of a program collapsing.feedback

The Republican proposals would benefit higher-income people over lower-income people.feedback

So, is this the moment at which Obamacare becomes Trumpcare? Enrollment was up slightly over last year up until this point.feedback

It's a sign that the Trump administration is looking to unwind the law in every way it can administratively.feedback

It would create a significant amount of uncertainty and affect insurers' ability to participate for 2018.feedback

It depends for whom you're talking about. For people with pre-existing conditions, choices are infinitely more abundant because they couldn't get coverage at all. For someone who's young and healthy there are likely fewer choices available now than before.feedback

That certainly provides some protection, but a lot of people could fall through the cracks. If you need a new roof on your house and can't pay your insurance premium for a while, you could be locked out.feedback

There are zero signs that the ACA's marketplaces are in danger of imminent collapse.feedback

Since I signed Obamacare into law, our businesses have added more than 15 million new jobs.feedback

If the current (Affordable Care Act) open enrollment period is successful and enrollment grows, it means the insurance market is not collapsing.feedback

I assumed it was impossible to repeal the ACA with 20 million people covered. I may have been wrong about that.feedback

That's not likely to satisfy consumers in the end.feedback

Consumers will be faced this year with not only big premium increases but also with a declining number of insurers participating, and that will lead to a tumultuous open enrollment period.feedback

This is essentially a status quo projection, with expected growth in enrollment matching what happened this year. That strikes me as reasonable, not too pessimistic, not too optimistic.feedback

The next open enrollment period will be pivotal. If enrollment grows in 2017, I think a lot of the current concerns will dissipate. On the other hand, if enrollment next year stagnates, it will likely precipitate a debate about how to fix the law, amidst big disagreement among Democrats and Republicans about what those fixes look like.feedback

It seems increasingly apparent that the big, national insurers are having trouble making money and competing in the ACA marketplaces. Some insurers, particularly those that historically served the Medicaid market, are doing better. It's clear that there's going to be less competition and choice in the marketplaces in 2017.feedback

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