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Repeal of individual mandate would save less than originally estimated, CBO says

The CBO estimates that doing away with the mandate save $338 billion over the next decade, not the $416 billion originally projected.

Susan Morse, Senior Editor

Repeal of the individual mandate would reduce the deficit by less than originally estimated, the Congressional Budget Office said Wednesday.

The CBO estimates that doing away with the mandate would reduce the deficit by $338 billion over the next decade, not the $416 billion it had originally projected.

[Also: Individual mandate could be on Trump's chopping block]

The CBO and Joint Committee on Taxation are expected to release a more complete analysis this afternoon that will also estimate the impact on health insurance coverage and premiums.

Some Republicans want to include a repeal of the mandate in tax reform legislation.  House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady made a request for an updated score as the committee is in the process of marking up the bill.

[Also: Insurers file multiple scenarios for 2018 ACA premium rates due to uncertainty over CSRs, individual mandate]

The Senate's proposal for tax reform is due out later this week.

If removal of the individual mandate is not included in legislation,  President Donald Trump is ready to sign an executive order allowing more people to get a hardship exemption. This would result in fewer people, especially healthy consumers, from buying ACA coverage.

Insurance markets would destabilize and premiums would increase, insurers have said.

The individual mandate increases the federal deficit by encouraging people to buy subsidized coverage.

Repeal of the mandate is seen as a step closer to getting rid of the law Republicans have been unable to repeal outright.

Twitter: @SusanJMorse
Email the writer: susan.morse@himssmedia.com

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