Veteran financial guru and former Ronald Reagan adviser Larry Kudlow says changes to Obamacare should include a special fund to help seriously ill people while healthier people pay less for insurance.
“You've got to separate out the healthy from the ill. You must take care of the ill. And if the government has to, it should stand behind and guarantee a risk pool,” Kudlow said on CNBC.
“The insurance companies don't want to pay for all the ill. They can't do it,” the Newsmax Finance Insider said.
House Republicans last week published a proposal to unite the party behind a plan to replace the Affordable Care Act and deliver on a central campaign promise.
The CBO this week forecast that the changes to healthcare policy would leave 24 million people without insurance and cut the federal deficit by $337 billion in the next decade.
The proposed plan would kill a mandate requiring most Americans to have health coverage or pay a penalty, and a requirement that larger employers provide health insurance to workers.
It also would repeal most of the health law’s taxes starting next year and freeze funding in 2020 for the 31 states that expanded Medicaid under the law.
“I don't think this is a health care mess,” Kudlow said in CNBC’s televised discussion with Jason Furman, the former chairman of President Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers.
“What I'm going to call the ‘Ryan bill’ for the moment, Ryan 1 or Ryan 2 – look, this thing does a lot of good," said Kudlow, who worked as Reagan’s budget deputy between 1981 and 1985.
"It opens up choice and competition. It's going to have major reforms on Medicaid, it's going to repeal 13 tax increases which is good for the economy,” said Kudlow, who served as the Trump campaign's senior economic adviser.
President Barack Obama in 2010 signed into law the ACA, the most sweeping overhaul of the U.S. healthcare system since the formation of Medicare and Medicaid in the 1960s. Obamacare sought to provide health coverage to an estimated 45 million uninsured Americans with a system of taxes, subsidies and mandates.
Furman said the GOP proposal means Americans will have higher-deductible plans.
“This plan is all about high deductibles,” Furman said. “They've been talking about lower deductibles and the CBO said correctly that this plan would raise those deductibles.”
Kudlow said that premiums and deductibles can come down if sick people are grouped into a separate pool with government-supported insurance.
“If the premiums come down as much as I believe they can come down, if we do this risk pooling for the ill and the sick, I think you'll see the deductibles come down as well,” said Kudlow.