Biden to Reopen Affordable Care Act Health Plans, Because Pandemic

Illustration for article titled Biden to Reopen Affordable Care Act Health Plans, Because Pandemic
Photo: Doug Mills (Getty Images)

Using his pen, also known as the undoer of all things Trump, President Joe Biden is set to sign executive actions as early as Thursday that will reopen “federal marketplaces selling Affordable Care Act health plans and to lower recent barriers to joining Medicaid.”

According to the Washington Post, this will be the Biden administration’s first step to helping Americans gain health insurance in a fucking pandemic, which has cost millions of folks their coverage as they’ve lost jobs due to the relentless pandemic.

So one plan is to get HealthCare.gov back up and running for at least a few months so Americans who lost their employer-based health coverage can find reasonable insurance on the open marketplace.

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From the Post:

Another part of Biden’s scheduled actions, the individuals said, is intended to reverse Trump-era changes to Medicaid that critics say damaged Americans’ access to the safety-net insurance. It is unclear whether Biden’s order will undo a Trump-era rule allowing states to impose work requirements, or simply direct federal health officials to review rules to make sure they expand coverage to the program that insures about 70 million low-income people in the United States.

The actions are part of a series of rapid executive orders the president is issuing in his initial days in office to demonstrate he intends to steer the machinery of government in a direction far different from that of his predecessor.

Biden has been saying for many months that helping people get insurance is a crucial federal responsibility. Yet until the actions planned for this week, he has not yet focused on this broader objective, shining a spotlight instead on trying to expand vaccinations and other federal responses to the pandemic.

The most important and ambitious portion of “Biden’s campaign health-care platform” needs Congressional approval and of course, money.

“Those include creating a government insurance option alongside the ACA health plans sold by private insurers, and helping poor residents afford ACA coverage if they live in about a dozen states that have not expanded their Medicaid programs under the decade-old health law,” the Post reports.

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Biden is also set to sign an order rescinding the “global gag rule,” which allowed the federal government to restrict federal family planning aid to nonprofits in countries that allowed abortions.

Maybe I’m a bit of a dreamer but I think it makes sense for people to have access to healthcare during a fucking pandemic, which has not only caused deaths but massive unemployment. Good thing that the president of people who don’t listen to soft rock sees it my way.

Senior Editor @ The Root, boxes outside my weight class, when they go low, you go lower.

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DISCUSSION

Makes Me Wonder Why I Even Bring The Thunder

Biden has been saying for many months that helping people get insurance is a crucial federal responsibility. Yet until the actions planned for this week, he has not yet focused on this broader objective, shining a spotlight instead on trying to expand vaccinations and other federal responses to the pandemic.

Yes, Washington Post, what’s changed recently that may have impacted how Joe is working on these issues? Perhaps this sort of analysis should include a clock of home many seconds we’re in to the Biden administration.