Hillary Clinton says that if she's elected president, she'd be willing to work with states to implement a public insurance option, according to the Associated Press.
It’s a move to unite the Democratic party, as the option is a compromise between Sen. Bernie Sanders’ idea for a single-payer plan and the current multi-payer system. Because Sanders is presumed to be out of the presidential race, this is Clinton’s way to win favor with his supporters, notes the AP.
It's not certain how many states would consider a public option, and private insurers are likely to oppose the idea of letting states set up their own insurance plans to compete against them.
However, public health insurance is what many liberals want, Robert Blendon, a professor at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, tells the AP. Many constituents won’t be satisfied with just added benefits to the Affordable Care Act, which Clinton suggested previously, he says.
Adding a public option to the health payer system is indeed possible, as federal legislation has already been approved that would allow it. Requests for state innovation waivers can be submitted at the beginning of 2017, and they can be used by states to create a public health option.
Clinton’s recent “Medicare for more” proposal, meanwhile, suggests opening Medicare to those 50 and older as a buy-in option, which could also have major implications for the ACA exchanges, as FierceHealthPayer previously reported.
To learn more:
- read the AP article