Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump released his plan to “make healthcare great again” Wednesday evening.
The billionaire businessman called for a complete repeal of the Affordable Care Act, saying Obamacare will likely collapse under its own weight and Congress need to be prepared to work on a free market alternative.
Under the seven-point plan, the individual mandate would be eliminated and current laws would be modified to allow insurance to be sold across state lines.
“As long as the plan purchased complies with state requirements, any vendor ought to be able to offer insurance in any state,” Trump said. “By allowing full competition in this market, insurance costs will go down and consumer satisfaction will go up.”
People would be able to fully deduct their premiums off of their taxes, a move he said will ensure Americans who can’t afford insurance won’t be alienated.
Trump said he would allow tax-free Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) to become part of individuals estates, allowing the contributions to be passed on without being subjected to the estate tax. The plan also calls for transparency from hospitals so buyers can shop around for the lowest rates.
The federal government would provide block grants to state Medicaid programs, giving them more discretion for their individual needs.
“The state governments know their people best and can manage the administration of Medicaid far better without federal overhead,” he said. “States will have the incentives to seek out and eliminate fraud, waste and abuse to preserve our precious resources.”
Trump called for reforms to make drug prices more affordable, saying the country needs to “remove barriers to entry into free markets for drug providers that offer safe, reliable and cheaper products.” According to the 2016 hopeful, allowing “safe and dependable” drugs to be imported from overseas would bring down costs.
The candidate went on to say illegal immigrants are driving up health care costs.
[dcquiz] “Providing healthcare to illegal immigrants costs us some $11 billion annually,” Trump said. “If we were to simply enforce the current immigration laws and restrict the unbridled granting of visas to this country, we could relieve healthcare cost pressures on state and local governments.”
He added the best way to get people off of entitlement programs like Medicare and Medicaid is to get them jobs, and believes his economic plan will lead to growth.
Trump also called for reforms to the mental health programs, saying there is bipartisan legislation in the works in Congress he can likely get behind.
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