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The Unaffordable Health Care Act

Older adults could pay thousands more under House bill

Unaffordable Health Care Act

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The House bill lowers the amount of individual tax credits that help low- to moderate-income people.

En español | If the health care bill passed this month by the House of Representatives becomes law, older consumers will end up paying a whole lot more for their health insurance. How much more?

It varies by state. In California, a 55-year-old with $25,000 in income could pay on average as much as $8,598 more a year than today. That same consumer could have to pay $5,920 more in Louisiana, $6,670 more in Iowa, $6,975 more in Colorado and $7,602 more in Maine.  Alaskans face the biggest increase: up to $18,533 more.


That’s according to an analysis by the AARP Public Policy Institute, which compares premiums governed by current law with premiums calculated under the House bill to replace the Affordable Care Act if it became law today.

“The bill affects real people, and we wanted to make sure that everybody understood how their premiums would be affected by the bill,” says Lina Walker, the institute’s vice president of health security. “For most of the states, residents will see significant increases if they are 50 or older.”

The House bill, the American Health Care Act (AHCA), includes two changes to current law that would affect annual premiums. First, it would increase the amount insurers can charge older consumers. Right now, insurers in most states can’t charge older adults more than three times the amount that younger people pay. But the House would raise that cap to five times what younger people pay. And states could waive that cap and let insurers charge even more, leaving older Americans vulnerable to skyrocketing premiums.

The analysis also takes into account another change that would hurt older consumers: The House bill would lower the amount of individual tax credits that help low- to moderate-income people buy insurance on state-sponsored health care exchanges.

More than 3 million older consumers rely on tax credits to buy coverage on the health care exchanges. Within this group, here’s how much more, on average, a 55-year-old with an income of $25,000 could pay in annual premiums in each state:

Alabama  

Alaska   

Arizona   

Arkansas    

California  

Colorado

Connecticut  

Delaware* 

District of Columbia*

Florida   

Georgia   

Hawaii* 

Idaho

Illinois  

Indiana

Iowa 

Kansas

Kentucky

Louisiana 

Maine 

Maryland 

Massachusetts † 

Michigan 

Minnesota

Mississippi 

Missouri 

Montana 

Nebraska 

Nevada

New Hampshire*

New Jersey* 

New Mexico 

New York †

North Carolina  

North Dakota 

Ohio 

Oklahoma 

Oregon 

Pennsylvania

Rhode Island* 

South Carolina 

South Dakota 

Tennessee  

Texas

Utah*

Vermont*  † 

Virginia                               

Washington                             

West Virginia                         

Wisconsin                              

Wyoming                                

$6,272 to $ 7,161

$17,964 to $18,533

$7,407 to $13,288

$2,209 to $2,557

$1,126 to $8,598

$2,368 to $6,975

$4,685 to $6,967

$5,173

$2,237

$2,866 to $9,750

$2,956 to $7,457

$3,578

$3,256 to $4,154

$3,703 to $9,186

$1,641 to $3,329

$4,002 to  $6,670

$4,002 to $4,644

$2,538 to $4,938

$4,958 to $5,920

$4,270 to $7,602

$2,373 to $2,825

($317 to $1,030 decrease)

$1,612 to $7,311

$3,758 to $8,394

$2,956 to $3,666

$3,912 to $7,462

$6,182 to $6,730

$2,239 to $10,651

$4,808 to $6,398

$1,339

$4,526

$1,492 to $7,582

($612 decrease) to an increase of $1,061

$8,124 to $9,803

$3,404 to $3,688

$1,552 to $6,081

$7,467 to $9,849

$3,374 to $6,804

$4,569 to $8,473

$1,194

$4,330 to $5,281

$5,973 to $6,508

$6,302 to $10,058

$2,597 to $9,307

$3,583

$700

$2,687 to $3,889

$281 to $2,364

 $6,332 to $8,482

$3,882 to $5,900

$7,139 to $7,272

*In smaller states, average premiums typically don’t vary from one part of the state to another.

† In these states, older adults pay either the same premium or twice what younger adults pay.

For more on how the AHCA would affect residents in your state, click here.

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