The high cost of care for COVID-19 for those WITH health insurance, and that an average cost for care is $72,000 has a huge impact in the cost of future premiums.
More spotlight on the unaffordable health care system in this country. Pelosi spoke today to try to protect ACA today now more than ever.
Severely ill coronavirus patients will generate such costly hospital bills that it could drive up insurance premiums by double digits for tens of millions of Americans next year.
That’s according to Peter Lee, director of California’s individual insurance marketplace, whose actuaries have estimated that medical care stemming from the virus could generate between $29 billion and $216 billion in hospital costs nationally for patients on employer-sponsored or individual market coverage, depending on the number of people ultimately infected.
The report out of California — which, like a half-dozen other states, is allowing people special permission to sign up for Affordable Care Act plans during the pandemic — underscores yet another economic ripple effect of the virus: It will spur large new health-care costs that many Americans will eventually feel.
While the vast majority of coronavirus patients will experience only mild symptoms, a subset of the infected will develop pneumonia or other respiratory trouble, requiring a hospital stay where they can have access to oxygen or a ventilator.
Actuaries for Covered California, the state’s ACA marketplace, estimated that patients hospitalized because of coronavirus would stay an average of 12 days, generating an average bill of $72,000.
A majority of these patients will be over age 65, so the federal Medicare program will pay their bills, which are typically around half or two-thirds of what commercial insurers pay. Low-income people on Medicaid will have coverage, too.
But the outlook is troubling for other Americans. If they are insured, they’ll mostly be covered after meeting their annual deductible, but they’ll still cause a boost in health-care spending that will make future premiums more expensive for everyone else.
And uninsured patients who require hospitalization will incur tens of thousands of dollars in costs.
They resurrected their frequent pre-coronavirus messaging about the Trump administration’s constant bombardment of the law, most specifically its position that the entire measure is unconstitutional and should be struck down by the courts. > Pelosi asked the administration to reverse its position on the ACA and to instead encourage the states still resisting Medicaid expansion to accept it.
Speaker Nancy Pelosi: “I’m calling on President Trump to abandon his lawsuit seeking to strike down the Affordable Care Act. Instead, the President should urge the 14 states that have refused to expand Medicaid to do so.” pic.twitter.com/l7fvm07WHw
The Hill (@thehill) March 24, 2020
and this statement from Family Kaiser Foundation - recognizing that ACA has been vital to the health of so many.
Larry Levitt, a senior vice president with the Kaiser Family Foundation:
Where we’d be in this public health crisis without the ACA:
About 20 million more people uninsured.
People with pre-existing conditions, at greatest risk for severe illness from COVID-19, locked out of individual insurance.
Annual and lifetime limits for many with insurance.
— Larry Levitt (@larry_levitt) March 23, 2020