Healthcare Predictions for 2018: What You Need to Know
If you have concerns about the outlook for your health care for the new year, you are not alone. Many people started 2018 not worrying about their diet or career goals, but how the upcoming changes in healthcare laws would affect themselves and their family. With the recent sinking of the Senate’s health care bill due to Senator John McCain’s finalizing vote, Congress is now taking a step backward and revisiting Obamacare.
Even though most of Congress wants to move on from the past mistakes and start fresh, it seems that we are still stuck in a battle and Obamacare may be the only thing we have to fall back on at this point. Whatever we end up with, whether it is something brand-new, or an older method there is a good chance that we will see many of the same issues until Congress comes to a solid agreement. Here are a few predictions on what we can expect to see in relation to health care in the upcoming months.
States Fight to Pass Their Own Health Care Mandate
One good thing that Americans can look forward to is the end of the Affordable Care Act’s requirement that all U.S. citizens must purchase health insurance coverage or pay a fine. While this is something good to look forward to, the idea that several states are planning to pass their own mandates that may or may not cause uninsured Americans to endure fees once again could be on the horizon.
At this time, only a handful of states have come up with a mandate including California, Maryland, Washington D.C., and Washington State. Massachusetts is also included, however, they already had a state mandate from 2006.
For 2018, expect to see several more states get on the mandate bandwagon to manage their own healthcare marketplace. There are no hints about which states will be involved. However, even if more states attempt to pass a health care mandate that could involve late enrollment penalties or higher premiums, it doesn’t mean that they will, in fact, pass.
CHIP Could Receive More Funding, or Face a Downfall
CHIP (Children’s Health Insurance Program) is slated to expire soon, and the government has yet to decide what to do about it. One thing is inevitable; the program will either get funded or come to a devastating end. Several states have begun 2018 with the possibility of shutting down their health program for low-income children within the coming month including Alabama, Colorado, and Connecticut. Unless Congress acts on the problem, families with children in the program in those states will see their health care end on January 31st.
While its best to prepare for the worst in these situations, many experts feel that it won’t come to that and Congress will soon come to a decision.
Major Changes in Medicaid
There are several states that want to give their Medicaid plan an overhaul. They would like to add in things such as small premiums or work requirements for those on the program. The possibility of drug-testing for beneficiaries is also a hot topic. Dozens of waiver requests from U.S. states have been awaiting approval from the Medicare administrator Seema Verma for months. However, they have yet to see any results. Some believe that 2018 may be the year that more states are able to take control of their Medicaid regulations.
States May Test Out New Ways to Expand Healthcare
The efforts to put an end to the Affordable Care Act have allowed more people to voice their opinion on how to expand health care coverage. One area of interest is the Medicare-for-All bill that is gaining support from Democrats. However, there are some states that have offered up some worthwhile ideas on how to make health coverage work better.
One example is how Nevada came close to becoming the first state in the country to enact their own Medicaid buy-in. This would allow any resident of the state to purchase coverage through a program that is normally only used by low-income families. While the state legislature passed it, the bill was vetoed by Nevada’s governor, Brian Sandoval.
A brand-new year always brings many changes, especially when it comes to health care laws. While it’s impossible to create a health care plan that we will all agree on, we may see some changes in the coming months that may appeal to most Americans if these predictions become true.
To learn more about possible health care changes for 2018, contact the experts at BuyHealthInsurance.com at 800-793-3803. Our licensed health insurance experts will be happy to answer any questions you have.