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Warner, Kaine on Trump, healthcare uncertainty

U.S. Senators Mark Warner and  Tim Kaine released the following statement on the uncertainty the Trump Administration has caused in the healthcare system, resulting in today’s announcement that Aetna will leave the Virginia marketplace in 2018.

mark warner tim kaine“As a result of the consistently mixed messages and increasing uncertainty on health care from the Trump Administration, some insurers will raise premiums and scale back their health insurance offerings in the individual market, which serves more than 400,000 people in Virginia. Aetna’s decision to leave the Virginia marketplace in 2018 shows the real-life consequences of President Trump playing politics with health care and unfortunately Virginians will be the ones paying the price for his actions. This week, Aetna’s CEO pointed directly to the Trump Administration’s threat to eliminate cost-sharing reductions as a move that put too much uncertainty into the system. He said he believes it’s time to admit that the ACA needs to be fixed, not repealed.

“President Trump has a responsibility to make clear whether he intends to continue using the health coverage of millions of Americans as political leverage, or whether he will demonstrate leadership by working in a bipartisan way to improve the Affordable Care Act. President Trump touting the idea of letting Obamacare ‘explode’ for personal and political gain is intentional sabotage of a system where millions of Americans have the most to lose. President Trump playing politics with the system as insurers were getting ready to set their rates for 2018 only made matters worse. The Administration should start by agreeing to permanently fund the cost-sharing reduction and reinsurance payments authorized by law, and withdrawing the dangerous Executive Order issued after the inauguration which is already undermining access to coverage. We have supported working in a bipartisan way to improve the Affordable Care Act, and stand ready to work with our colleagues to promote competition and affordability in the marketplace.”