KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

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Insured People Who Republicans Have Dubbed ‘Victims’ Of ACA Get Hit Again By Health Law Uncertainty

These consumers may have to shoulder soaring premiums if Republicans don't act to stabilize a marketplace that's been weakened, in part, by recent Trump administration moves. Meanwhile, former Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Chief Andy Slavitt accuses President Donald Trump of purposely raising premiums.

Los Angeles Times: Squeezed Again: Americans Burdened By Obamacare Now Face Even Higher Costs Under Trump
Jim Hansen and his wife considered themselves fortunate when they retired five years ago. The Denver couple, both electrical engineers, were healthy. They’d socked away an ample nest egg. And they found health insurance that, if not cheap, seemed reasonable for two people in their late 50s. Then, the math started to change. Since 2015, the couple’s annual premiums have more than tripled and may hit nearly $18,000 next year. (Levey, 9/29)

The Hill: Ex-Medicare Head Says Trump ‘Purposely’ Raising Insurance Premiums
The former head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) under President Obama blamed President Trump on Friday for rising health-care premiums around the country. Andy Slavitt, who was acting CMS administrator from 2015 to 2017, accused Trump on Twitter of "purposely raising" health-care premiums as part of his plan to let ObamaCare "implode." (Bowden, 9/30)

Seattle Times: Washington State’s Health-Exchange Rates To Jump 24 Percent
Washingtonians buying insurance through the state’s health-insurance exchange will see the largest premium increases next year since the exchange was created in 2013. The Washington Health Benefit Exchange board this week approved rate increases averaging 24 percent. The rates, first approved by the state’s Office of the Insurance Commissioner, will impact about 180,000 customers. (Blethen, 9/29)

The Hill: Oklahoma Blames Trump Officials For Higher Premiums 
Oklahoma officials are blaming the Trump administration for rising health-care premiums in the state after the administration missed a deadline to approve a key waiver for the state under ObamaCare. In a letter addressed to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Tom Price, Oklahoma's health commissioner rips the administration for missing a final deadline for a State Innovation Waiver, which would be used to lower premiums around the state. (Bowden, 9/29)

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