KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

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New Bill Tries To Lure Conservatives With Option To Sell Cheap, Bare Bone Insurance Plans

The option is part of an amendment by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) that was included in the newly unveiled legislation despite insurers' warning that it will further destabilize the marketplace.

USA Today: Senate Health Care Bill: Republicans Woo Conservatives In Latest Draft
The draft bill, released on the Senate Budget Committee's website, tries to appeal to conservatives by including a version of an amendment by Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, that would allow the sale of deregulated insurance plans as long as Obamacare-compliant plans are also still sold. Cruz confirmed to reporters that his amendment is in the bill and called that "very significant progress." “If this is the bill, I will support it,” Cruz told reporters Thursday afternoon. But Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, who helped craft the original amendment with Cruz, was undecided about how he would vote on the bill because the amendment was changed during negotiations, his spokesman said. (Kelly, Collins and Shesgreen, 7/13)

USA Today: Sick? You Might Not Like The GOP's Latest Health Bill
The Senate dropped a new version of its beleaguered health bill Thursday, tacking on a Ted Cruz proposal in order to win over conservatives like Ted Cruz. It basically lets people buy cheap, bare-bones insurance plans alongside more robust, Obamacare-compliant plans. That's good news for the healthy, and bad news for the sick: If healthy folks flock to cheaper plans, the other plans covering pre-existing conditions will grow more expensive — destabilizing the market in the process, insurance companies say. (Hafner, 7/13)

The Hill: Senate GOP May Not Use CBO To Score Cruz Amendment
Senate Republicans may not use the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) to score a version of Sen. Ted Cruz’s (R-Texas) controversial amendment that was included in the updated Senate healthcare bill. Instead, a member of Senate GOP leadership said analysis from the Trump administration — including the Health and Human Services Department and the White House Office of Management and Budget — might be used instead of the nonpartisan CBO. (Weixel, 7/13)

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