Higher Premiums, Lower Subsidies For Older People Under ACA Replacement

Mar 9, 2017
Originally published on March 8, 2017 5:17 pm

People in their 50s and 60s could be hit with higher health insurance premiums and less financial help paying for them under a proposed replacement for the Affordable Care Act.

The AARP released a statement opposing the House plan, which is called the American Health Care Act.

Jeff Johnson, director of AARP Florida, says the plan will cost those between the ages of 50 and 64 a lot more money.

That’s because the tax credits provided under the proposal are capped at $4,000. At the same time, rules that prohibit insurance companies from charging older people more than three times what they charge younger people will be relaxed.

"So your sticker price will go up and the amount of help you will get will go down," Johnson said. "So that's a double whammy that we are concerned about."

Johnson says his members are also concerned that the proposal could weaken Medicare and not provide enough money for Medicaid.

The Kaiser Family Foundation created an interactive county-by-county map to help people understand how their tax credits under the Affordable Care Act might change if the American Health Care Act is adopted.

Under one example, a 60-year-old in Pinellas County making $30,000 a year would see the financial assistance from the government drop by $3,320, or 45 percent.  And a 60-year-old who earns only $20,000 would see the tax credit fall by $4,850, from $8,850.

Some younger people may get more financial assistance under the plan. For example, a 27-year-old Hillsborough County man making $30,000 a year would see his average tax credit rise from $1,170 under Obamacare to $2,000 under the House’s plan. Someone the same age who makes $40,000 gets no tax credits under the Affordable Care Act. Under the American Health Care Act, he would get $2,000 in tax credits.