Could Obamacare ‘fail’? A look at what’s working, and what’s not


Timothy Hoff, D’Amore-McKim School of Business professor of management, healthcare systems and health policy.

 

The state of healthcare remains a significant and divisive topic in the United States, with President Trump recently calling to “let Obamacare fail,” then later reversing his directive to Republican Senators, commanding they repeal and replace the measure.

The American people are in a confusing limbo with many wondering what the current state of healthcare actually is. Timothy Hoff, D’Amore-McKim School of Business professor of management, healthcare systems and health policy, examines the current healthcare situation in the United States and assesses the future viability of Obamacare.

Although President Trump has been quick to call for the repeal of Obamacare, Hoff is doubtful it will happen.

“The Senate’s been working on this for several months,” he said. “I don’t see how they’ll come together all of a sudden and craft a replacement bill that will get the support of 50 senators. If they could’ve done that, they’d have done it by now.”

Hoff also doubts that Obamacare will fail on its own, but acknowledges there are some steps the president could take to push it closer to collapse, such as cutting off Affordable Care Act subsidies to health plans and directing the IRS and other federal agencies to stop enforcing the individual health insurance Obamacare mandate.

“That would mean healthier people could jump out of the market, leaving sicker people in there, and that would destabilize insurance exchanges,” Hoff said.

Hoff identifies some areas where Obamacare has been successful, including healthier insurance exchanges in parts of the country, profitability in its current marketplaces, and the increase in knowledge of the benefits of having health insurance.

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