On Monday, the Republican Congress took a big step closer to their vow to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA) with the rollout of their American Health Care Act.
The Republican plan does not dismantle the ACA—also known as Obamacare—all at once, but it does among other things, do away with the individual mandate and transforms the government subsidies to help pay insurance premiums with tax credits.
On Tuesday, Susan Channick, professor of law and co-director of the Institute of Health Law Studies at California Western School of Law, talked with Maureen Cavanaugh on KPBS Radio’s Midday Edition program about changes to the existing law, the viability of the health care exchanges, the controversial individual mandate and the planned 30-percent surcharge that will replace the individual mandate, as well as proposed block grants to states for Medicaid expansion.
Channick explains that the main difference between the ACA and the proposed AHCA is that the Republican plan tax credits are based on age whereas the ACA tax credits are based on income. "So, there is a rather small range of credits that will be available under the Republican plan starting at $2,000 annually for people who are 30 and under and increasing incrementally to $4,000, the maximum for people 60 and older."
Listen to the full interview on KPBS.org.
Professor Channick joined the California Western School of Law faculty in 1987. She teaches Health Law & Policy; Public Health Law; Law, Aging and Policy; and Health Law Survey.