NEWS

Trump likes main Obamacare provisions 'very much'

November 12, 2016

US President-elect Donald Trump has said in an interview he is open to leaving intact key parts of President Barack Obama's healthcare bill.

 

Mr Trump, who has pledged repeatedly to repeal the 2010 law, signalled he was receptive to a compromise after visiting the White House on Thursday.

He told the Wall Street Journal he favours keeping two pillars of the bill because "I like those very much".

 

One is a ban on insurers denying coverage for pre-existing conditions.

 

The other provision that the president-elect told the newspaper he favours allows young adults to be insured on their parents' policies.

 

Mr Trump told the Journal it was his hour-and-a-half meeting with Mr Obama that had made him reconsider his calls for an all-out repeal of the Affordable Care Act.

 

During the election campaign, Mr Trump said the government-run health insurance marketplace was "a total disaster" and "a catastrophe".

"Obamacare is just blowing up," he said only last month, while promising his own plan would deliver "great healthcare at a fraction of the cost".

 

While running for president, Mr Trump did not offer much detail on what he envisaged would be Obamacare's replacement.

 

The Republican's plan included tax-deductible health savings accounts and allowing insurers to sell coverage across state lines.

 

Though the Republicans have maintained control of the Senate, they cannot repeal the Affordable Care Act in its entirety because under senate rules, the Democratic minority remain in a position to block the move.

 

The Republicans could, however, starve parts of the bill of funding through a budgetary process called reconciliation.

 

Last month, the Obama administration said the average cost of medical coverage under the bill was expected to rise by 25% next year for those Americans who do not qualify for subsidies.

 

And about one in five consumers would only be able to pick plans from a single insurer, it added.

 

Former President Bill Clinton last month called the unsubsidised portion of the law "the craziest thing in the world".

 

In the US - unlike in many other Western countries - private companies, rather than the government, provide health insurance for most citizens.

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