Healthcare bill would drive up costs for older Americans | Letter

Lawmakers in Washington, D.C. are considering a bill that would drive up healthcare costs by thousands of dollars a year for Americans ages 50 to 64. This onerous “age tax” threatens to cut people’s access to care at a time of life when it is increasingly needed.

Even worse, the American Health Care Act imposes a double whammy on older consumers who are still too young for Medicare. It not only would allow insurers to charge them five times what other people pay, it would also reduce tax credits that help many pay for the insurance they have now.

If this bill gets through, big insurance companies will have free rein to charge older Americans a lot more. In fact, up to $8,400 more per year for the same coverage you have now.

If that weren’t wrong-headed enough, the bill doles out some $200 billion in tax breaks to big drug and insurance companies and other special interests. This defies common sense and places the financial burden for health care on those who can least afford it. Americans need a health care system that protects them in the insurance market, not one that sends them over the cliff.

AARP opposes the American Health Care Act because it increases costs and risks for older Americans. If you agree, contact your member of Congress and make sure your voice is heard.

John Barnett, Kirkland

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