The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) on Wednesday scored the House-passed version of the American Health Care Act (AHCA), saying the legislation would increase the number of uninsured people by 23 million in 2026 relative to current law.
The report from the CBO and the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) said the bill would result in 14 million more uninsured people in 2018.
The agencies also completed their estimate of the direct spending and revenue effects of the bill, saying it would reduce the cumulative federal deficit over the 2017-2026 period by $119 billion. That amount is $32 billion less than the estimated net savings for the previously scored version of the AHCA.
The agencies said nongroup insurance markets would continue to be stable in many parts of the country, but substantial uncertainty about how the new law would be implemented could lead insurers to withdraw from or not enter the nongroup market. The agencies estimated that about one-sixth of the population resides in areas in which the nongroup market would start to become unstable beginning in 2020.
“Community-rated premiums would rise over time, and people who are less healthy (including those with preexisting or newly acquired medical conditions) would ultimately be unable to purchase comprehensive nongroup health insurance at premiums comparable to those under current law, if they could purchase it at all–despite the additional funding that would be available under H.R. 1628 to help reduce premiums,” the report said.