MURPHY CRITICIZES TRUMP FOR SABOTAGING AFFORDABLE CARE ACT AHEAD OF OPEN ENROLLMENT

Click here to view video of Murphy’s remarks.

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), a member of the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, received feedback on how to improve the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and stabilize the healthcare marketplace on Tuesday during a bipartisan HELP Committee hearing. Murphy criticized President Trump for defunding ACA advertising in the upcoming enrollment period and for sabotaging the health care law. 

“I was just with the head of Connecticut’s exchange – one of the most successful in the country,” said Murphy. “This week, we will know whether our insurers are staying in for the next enrollment period, and folks that run our exchange couldn’t imagine a worse time for the president to have announced the dramatic rollback of marketing. At a moment where at least one of our insurers is on the precipice of walking away, this announcement may be the straw that breaks the camel’s back.”

Highlights of Murphy’s remarks are below:

“Thank you very much Mr. Chairman.

“Let me just underscore the importance of marketing. I was just with the head of Connecticut’s exchange – one of the most successful in the country. This week, we will know whether our insurers are staying in for the next enrollment period, and folks that run our exchange couldn’t imagine a worse time for the president to have announced the dramatic rollback of marketing. Even though we do a lot of it ourselves in Connecticut, we rely on those national marketing campaigns as well. And at a moment where at least one of our insurers is on the precipice of walking away, this announcement may be the straw that breaks the camel’s back.”

“I just have one question and it’s frankly maybe a little bit of devil’s advocate on a concept that I actually support, which is state-based reinsurance, perhaps backed up by the federal government. And I want to ask this to Mr. Tyson.

“Your whole business model is built upon accountable care, and we’ve spent a lot of time talking about the importance of building a system of insurance and a system of reimbursement based upon getting insurance companies and big physicians groups and hospitals to care about outcomes. One of the risks of taking off of insurance companies the cost of very highly medically acute patients, is it then doesn’t put the risk on patients who don’t get preventative health services and who spiral out of control into the highest five or 10 percent of spenders, takes it away from the insurance company.

“As a representative of a company who thinks a lot about how you build accountable systems of care, imagine a world in which we do have a state-based, universal system of reinsurance. How do you make sure then that insurance companies – who would still be providing the care for everybody else – have an incentive system in place to make sure that they don’t just sort of look the other way when somebody gets really medically complex because they don’t have to worry about it on the backend?”