Trump administration blocks special ObamaCare enrollment
The Trump administration has decided against reopening HealthCare.gov enrollment, reversing course on a matter that could impact millions of Americans without health insurance in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The president and administration officials had appeared to be leaning toward relaunching enrollment in ObamaCare.
A report in Politico now indicates that the administration is “exploring other options.
The move drew a stunning rebuke from Congressman Don Beyer, D-Va.
“People have already died because they did not have access to healthcare during the COVID-19 pandemic. The president is now intentionally ensuring that this can happen again. What a despicable way to treat those who need help in a time of crisis. They need to rethink this,” Beyer said Wednesday.
Rep. Abigail Spanberger, D-Va., called the move by the Trump administration “tragic and misguided.”
“Without the opportunity to sign up for new or updated health insurance plans, many Central Virginia families who are uninsured won’t be able to change their current coverage situations until November 2020. If these individuals become sick due to COVID-19 in the coming weeks, they won’t have insurance coverage to get them through their medical emergency—and they’ll put their communities at even higher risk,” Spanberger said. “To make sure those who are seriously ill can obtain the treatment they need, we need to come to the aid of our most vulnerable neighbors during this difficult time. I urge the administration to reevaluate this decision, because the lives of Central Virginians are hanging in the balance.”
The Affordable Care Act does allow special enrollment for people who have lost their workplace health plans, so the law may still serve as a safety net for those recently furloughed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Several Democratic-led states that run their own insurance markets have already reopened enrollment in recent weeks as the coronavirus threat grew.
The federal government oversees enrollment for about two-thirds of states.
Story by Chris Graham