A Biden-Like Health Plan Proposal Could Improve Affordability, Lower Premiums

Expanding Affordable Care Act (ACA) premium subsidies beyond the current range of 100-400% of the federal poverty level for potential enrollees, as proposed by Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, would lower costs for almost all exchange enrollees, according to a recent Kaiser Family Foundation analysis. Biden also wants to tie ACA subsidies to the second-lowest-cost gold plan rather than the second-lowest-cost silver plan and reduce the maximum premium contribution to 8.5% of an enrollee’s income for a benchmark gold plan. Under his proposal, older people making $50,000 annually would save the most on their monthly premiums. A 60-year-old would pay $354 on average per month for the second-lowest-cost gold plan instead of the current premium of $1,029. With the expanded subsidies, Biden’s campaign estimated that federal spending on the ACA exchanges would increase significantly.

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Jinghong Chen Reporter

Jinghong produces infographics and data stories on health insurance and specialty pharmacy for AIS Health. She graduated from Missouri School of Journalism with a focus on data journalism and international reporting. Before joining AIS in 2018, she worked at WBEZ, Al Jazeera English and The New York Times Chinese.

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