Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton released more details Wednesday about her plan to improve the Affordable Care Act.
After unveiling her proposal to cap monthly and annual out-of-pocket costs for prescription drugs for patients suffering from chronic illnesses, Clinton issued a statement detailing how she wants insurers to loosen their provider-network rules, which currently can cause consumers to receive unexpected bills. She also wants to create a tax credit that helps people pay their out-of-pocket healthcare costs.
Here's a rundown of Clinton's full proposal:
Lower out-of-pocket costs. Because one in four adults did not receive healthcare coverage last year due to financial reasons, Clinton wants to mandate that health plans provide three illness-related doctor visits that don't count toward a patient's deductibles every year. Additionally, for families struggling to pay prescription drug costs, the plan will provide a new, refundable tax credit of up to $5,000 per family for excessive out-of-pocket costs.
Enforce price transparency. Clinton's plan vows to protect Americans from surprise medical bills. In her statement, she says individuals will benefit from expanded disclosure requirements and new cost-sharing protections that will ensure they pay no more than in-network cost-sharing for any care received in their plan's networks. Clinton also plans to enforce existing law under the ACA that requires insurers and providers to disclose pricing information.
Fight against premium increases. Due to the recent mergers throughout the industry, market concentration is rising on both sides of the healthcare system, according to Clinton's statement. So, to combat rising consumer costs, Clinton will provide regulators with the resources so they can monitor the changing landscape. She also plans to block or modify unreasonable health insurance rate increases.
Clinton isn't the only presidential hopeful to unveil a healthcare plan. Earlier this month, Bernie Sanders introduced legislation that would allow Medicare to negotiate prices with drug companies, which if enacted, could have major implications for both public and private payers.
- here's Clinton's plan