GOP Health Bill Could Put Care Out of Reach for People Over 50

The Republican proposal to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act is widely expected to result in less coverage, weaker protections and higher costs for nearly all consumers, but the group that would be hit the hardest is older Ohioans.

While the legislation provides $600 billion in tax cuts directed mostly at the wealthiest Americans and corporations, it is paid for by dramatically reducing the amount of tax credits available to people purchasing insurance on health insurance exchanges. The plan also makes steep cuts to Medicaid, which benefits millions of seniors.

Here’s how the Republican plan would hurt older people and seniors, according to AARP:

  • The tax credit changes will “dramatically increase premium costs” for older consumers, up to $8,400,
  • Creates an “age tax,  in which insurance companies would be allowed to charge older people 5x as much as younger consumers pay, compared 3x under the ACA.
  • “Weakens Medicare” by eliminating tax revenue that currently keeps the Medicare trust fund solvent through 2028.

The Congressional Budget Office has yet to “score” the bill, or determine how many Americans will lose coverage or how the legislation will affect the national deficit, but it is already clear that people at lower income levels, including many seniors, will see financial help for the cost of insurance greatly decreased.

Here’s how much a 60-yr old Ohioan in each of Ohio’s 88 counties would lose in tax credits under the proposal, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation comparison of current Affordable Care Act tax credits vs. tax credits made available in the Republican health repeal bill: