Last Thursday, Donald Trump signed an executive order on healthcare, surrounded by Republicans and business leaders.
The White House said the order is “promoting healthcare choice and competition,” but many saw it as an attempt to dismantle protections under the Affordable Care Act.
Here’s how BuzzFeed News healthcare reporter Paul McLeod described the order:
President Trump signed an executive order Thursday that could radically transform Obamacare and the American health care system in general, all without having to go through Congress.
Trump’s order will allow small businesses to band together and join their own, unregulated insurance plans that can offer less coverage at cheaper prices. Obamacare rules would not apply to these plans, meaning they can drop coverage for things like maternity care, mental health services, and prescription drugs. Crucially, these off-market plans would open the door for people with preexisting health conditions to be charged higher rates.
That could leave behind a disproportionately sicker, and thus more expensive, group that needs the protections of Obamacare, driving up prices for those still on the small group or individual markets.