ACHP Media Monitoring Report: January 24, 2017

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GOP Senators introduce bill allowing states to keep exchanges
Sens. Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Susan Collins (R-ME) have introduced a health care bill that they are framing as a replacement to the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The bill allows states some latitude in retaining elements of the ACA exchanges or opting into a different less comprehensive coverage model. Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) has rejected the bill, arguing it would create confusion and undermine coverage for millions of Americans, writes Peter Sullivan of The Hill. The bill is one of many being floated by Republicans.

Trump’s coverage promises complicate GOP efforts on Medicaid
Republican efforts to convert Medicaid to a block grant system are complicated by President Trump’s promise not to cut insurance coverage. The block grant system originally envisioned by Republicans gives states more authority in managing Medicaid but would impose per capita spending caps that could limit coverage, according to Burgess Everett, Rachel Bade and Rachana Pradhan of Politico.

Executive order signals changes to ACA, sparks confusion
The Trump administration might pursue a variety of actions to modify the Affordable Care Act (ACA) without legislation from Congress. Nicholas Bagley and Adrianna McIntyre of The Incidental Economist share President Trump’s executive order brings attention to options the administration has for autonomously taking action on the ACA, including limiting special enrollment periods and delaying enforcement of certain taxes.

President Trump’s executive order instructing federal agencies to roll back enforcement of provisions from the ACA has led to confusion among consumers. Tens of thousands of Americans have called help centers inquiring if they can still enroll in ACA plans. Experts believe the executive order may damper enrollment bumps usually seen at the end of an enrollment period, writes Victoria Colliver of Politico.

Price scrutinized for investments
President Donald Trump’s nominee for Health and Human Services Secretary Rep. Tom Price (R-GA) continues to face questions about his financial, legislative and campaign activities while serving in Congress. According to Kimberly Kindy and Amy Goldstein of The Washington Post, Price has traded stock in health companies while at the same time pushing legislation that could potentially benefit the groups. Price has also received campaign contributions from health organizations. Ethics lawyers have said Price’s activities are “extremely rare.” Democrats plan to question Price’s investments and track record as a lawmaker at his hearing this week.

Previous CMS head pushes ACA reform instead of repeal
Former Acting Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Andy Slavitt plans to remain engaged in the political realm in order to advocate for the Affordable Care Act (ACA). According to Joanne Kenen and Dan Diamond of Politico, Slavitt will not return to the private sector, but will attempt to build bipartisan support for reforming the ACA instead of repealing it.