Congressman Chris Collins Condemns Rising Health Insurance Premiums
Congressman Chris Collins (NY-27) today reacted to news of anticipated steep increases in the price of BlueCross BlueShield plans available to New Yorker’s through the New York State Insurance marketplace.
“Not only has Obamacare been a failure for most of America, it is now failing the people of Western New York by making basic healthcare completely unaffordable and inaccessible,” said Congressman Collins. “I am absolutely appalled a BlueCross BlueShield plan in Western New York would increase by almost fifty percent in the marketplace.”
BlueCross BlueShield pointed to the failed Obamacare policies that have cost insurance companies millions of dollars, driving up costs for Americans. Regulations put in place under Obamacare have made the insurance marketplace less competitive, thus increasing costs for consumers.
While President Obama promised that premiums under his plan would decrease during these last few years, a May 23, 2017 report from the Department of Health and Human Services showed that Obamacare increased premiums across the country by 105% between 2013 and 2017.
“Obamacare’s chief cheerleader in our state, Governor Andrew Cuomo, owes our community an apology,” added Congressman Collins. “Cuomo is part and parcel to Obama’s promises that ‘you can keep your plan’ and premiums will be lower. Those have turned out to be lies.”
Collins said there was help on the way. The American Health Care Act (AHCA), which passed the House of Representatives on May 4, 2017, repeals and replaces Obamacare and removes more than $800 billion in onerous taxes and fees that have been stifling the economy and eliminating job growth.
“I am working with my colleagues in Congress to implement policies that allow the people of Western New York the opportunity to make their own choice when it comes to healthcare and provide lower premiums. Americans deserve to be able to pick which plan works best for their family, and I’m urging the senate to take up the American Health Care Act so we can get ourselves out of this mess.”
The American Health Care Act:
· Eliminates the individual and employer mandate, which forced millions of workers, families, and job creators into government mandated plans that did not work for their needs.
· For Western New Yorkers, the bill also includes the largest property tax reduction ever to be enacted. The legislation includes an amendment Congressman Collins introduced that would bar federal reimbursements for New York State Medicaid funds raised from local governments.
· Guarantees protections for individuals with pre-existing conditions by prohibiting insurance companies from denying coverage on the basis of a pre-existing condition, banning insurers from rescinding coverage based on a pre-existing condition, and preventing insurers from raising premiums on individuals with pre-existing conditions who maintain continuous coverage. Additionally, New York state law fully protects individuals with pre-existing conditions.
· Modernizes and strengthens Medicaid by implementing a “per capita allotment” which provides more flexibility for states and results in the largest entitlement reform in decades.
· Provides Americans access to affordable care that works for their needs by delivering monthly tax credits of $2,000-$14,000 a year, which individuals and families can use to purchase private insurance of their choice.
· A provision within the American Health Care Act (AHCA), The Patient and State Stability Fund, would provide solutions to help lower costs and repair insurance markets damaged by Obamacare. CBO estimates this would significantly reduce premiums in the nongroup market and encourage participation by insurers.
The American Health Care Act is with the Senate where it will need to be approved before heading to President Trump’s desk to be signed into law.