Insurance costs could spike in the US if subsidies for health coverage is struck down by the Supreme Court
Health insurance costs could skyrocket in the United States, depending on a decision from the Supreme Court. The country’s highest court is set to begin hearing a case by the end of this week regarding the legality of subsidies offered by the federal government. Per the Affordable Care Act, the government offers subsidies that are meant to offset the cost of health insurance coverage acquired through a state or federal exchange.
Case calls for the end of subsidies in states where the federal government operates health insurance exchanges
The case before the Supreme Court has to do with whether or not the federal government has the ability to offer subsidies in states where it operates exchanges. Some states manage their own exchanges while the federal government operates other exchanges in the country through HealthCare.gov. The Affordable Care Act does not state specifically that the federal government can offer subsidies for coverage purchased through exchanges that it manages itself. If the Supreme Court rules to strike down subsidies, hundreds of thousands of people throughout the country could lose their health insurance coverage.
$1 trillion could be spent on insurance subsidies by 2025
According to the Congressional Budget Office, more than $1 trillion will be spent on subsidies for health insurance coverage by 2025. Some federal officials believe that subsidies are a costly solution to an equally costly problem and something the government cannot continue to support. Some lawmakers believe that more should be done to reform health care and make insurance coverage more accessible to consumers.
Lack of subsidies could mean that many people lose their insurance coverage
The Supreme Court is expected to issue a ruling concerning subsidies at some point later in the year. If the court decides to favor subsidies, those consumers already receiving financial aid for their coverage will continue to receive this aid. If subsidies are struck down, people in states with federal health insurance exchanges will lose their subsidies completely, which will cause the cost of insurance coverage to rise significantly.