One-third of jobs in health care
LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 6, 2017) — Repealing federal health reform, including two key measures—insurance premium tax credits and expansion of Medicaid eligibility— would lead to $140 billion in losses in federal funding for health care in 2019, leading to the loss of 2.6 million jobs (mostly in the private sector), including 45,000 jobs in Kentucky, says a study by The Commonwealth Fund.
President-elect Donald Trump has said repealing the Affordable Care Act will be his first act after being sworn in on Jan. 20. Research shows that the loss of the law’s insurance premium tax credits and expansion of Medicaid eligibility “would lead to a doubling of the number of uninsured, higher uncompensated care costs for providers, and higher taxes for low-income Americans,” states the report.
Of the 2.6 million lost jobs one-third are in health care. The report states: “If replacement policies are not in place, there will be a cumulative $1.5 trillion loss in gross state products and a $2.6 trillion reduction in business output from 2019 to 2023. States and health care providers will be particularly hard hit by the funding cuts.”
A bill passed by Congress in 2015 (H.R. 3762) sought to repeal insurance premium tax credits and expansion of Medicaid eligibility beginning in 2018—with no replacement plan—but it was vetoed by President Obama. The new Congress could pass a repeal bill in early 2017 but not develop a replacement bill until later, states the report.
“Recent analyses show canceling the ACA’s tax credits and Medicaid expansion would double the number of uninsured Americans,” states the report. “As millions lose their insurance, hospitals and other providers would see their uncompensated medical care costs soar by $1.1 trillion from 2019 to 2028, and they would experience major revenue losses as well.”