With the Republican TrumpCare bill dead, President Trump is actively rooting for insurers to leave markets and raise premiums – problems his own administration’s actions are creating. This is cynical, immoral and deeply destructive to working Americans.
Instead, how about we bury once and for all this effort to decimate people’s health care, and talk about ways to lower costs and improve care?
Let’s talk on a bipartisan basis about strengthening the existing exchanges by restoring the risk-sharing payments that have been cut and building in reinsurance so insurers have more certainty around which to set premiums. We could strengthen subsidies to make sure insurance is affordable. We could explore ways to lower prescription drug costs — by allowing Medicare to negotiate prices, for example. And we should create a public option to expand consumers’ options.
Ultimately, the answer to a fairer, less complex, less stressful health care system is some form of Medicare for All. Meanwhile, while we build toward that goal, there is plenty Congress can do to actually improve the options available to Americans.
*Jeff Merkley is a US Senator, member of the Democrat Party and represents the State of Oregon.