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The ACA Repeal: How Would It Affect Seniors?

By Dian Brannen, 9:00 am on

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) is in jeopardy of being repealed and replaced, and millions of people may lose their healthcare, including seniors. Since the ACA was signed into law, it has provided seniors with several benefits and discounts. The current administration has vowed to replace the healthcare law with a better plan. The repeal may take away certain ACA benefits from seniors and impact their health and quality of life.

Living with a serious health condition can make it challenging for seniors to age in place. However, they can maintain a higher quality of life with the help of professional live-in care. Allentown seniors can benefit from assistance with meal prep, bathing, transportation to the doctor’s office, medication reminders, and much more. Here are a few ways a potential ACA repeal could affect seniors.

Prescription Drugs

Medicare beneficiaries fall into the coverage gap known as the “donut hole,” and they receive discounted prescriptions under the ACA. The healthcare law also offers seniors tax-free rebates to help cover the cost of several prescriptions. The ACA repeal would take away those rebates and discounts on name-brand and generic prescriptions. Before the ACA, many seniors were unable to buy the prescriptions they needed, making their illnesses worse. Seniors who reach the donut hole save thousands of dollars on average each year. The ACA would close this gap by the year 2020, making prescriptions affordable for everyone, including seniors. The repeal could cost seniors thousands of dollars each year, which must be paid out of pocket.

Seniors can face a variety of challenges as they age, many of which can be mitigated with the help of professional in-home caregivers who provide high-quality home care. Allentown families trust in Home Care Assistance to help their elderly loved ones age in place safely and comfortably.

Fraud

Currently, the ACA has resources and tools that help protect seniors against Medicare fraud, abuse, and waste. There are professional scammers who target seniors and use their numbers to gain money through fraudulent payments. Companies also target seniors by billing for services they do not offer. Since the ACA started this effort, the government has recovered millions of dollars from individuals and companies seeking these illegal payments. There are strict penalties against this type of fraudulent behavior, and more law enforcement agencies are working to identify the criminals who abuse seniors receiving Medicare benefits. Repealing the ACA would take away the money spent on these tools and resources.

Medicare Trust Fund

With the reductions in waste and fraud, the life expectancy of the Medicare Trust Fund was extended. The provisions of the law reduce hospital costs and prevent readmissions, which also help extend the trust fund by lowering spending. The per capita growth has slowed, and the overall trajectory spending on Medicare has seen a significant decrease thanks to the ACA. Repealing the healthcare law would cause the Medicare Trust Fund to lose years of solvency.

Mandates

The new administration has targeted the mandate as an issue that must be repealed. However, the mandate allows seniors to receive coverage regardless of preexisting conditions. The mandate calls for everyone to get coverage, regardless of age or health, and helps insurance providers pay for the costs associated with people with a variety of illnesses, including chronic and age-related conditions. Without the mandate, insurance providers may not be able to pay for individuals with preexisting conditions, causing providers to drop these individuals, raise premiums, or deny them coverage. This means more seniors may be denied coverage, in comparison to younger, healthier individuals.

If your senior loved one needs hourly care, Allentown, PA, Home Care Assistance is here to help. Our part-time caregivers are trained to assist older adults with a wide variety of everyday tasks, including meal prep, physical activity, and personal hygiene. We also provide 24-hour care and specialized care for seniors with Alzheimer’s, dementia, and Parkinson’s. Even if your senior loved one risks losing out on certain ACA benefits, you can still call us at 484-350-3874 to create a customized care plan for him or her.