Legislation would force nearly all participants in the nation’s health system to adjust
The bill that narrowly passed the House on Thursday creates a mechanism to free insurers to sell a wider variety of products—including less-comprehensive plans now barred by law—and to price them in new ways, potentially raising premiums for older and sicker Americans.
The bill ends the requirement that individuals carry insurance or pay a penalty, substituting a price increase for those who choose to go without coverage and buy it later. It gives states more freedom to experiment with their Medicaid programs.
Republicans are betting that these changes will engender competition, draw healthier people into the insurance pool and cut premium prices overall. Democrats, who uniformly opposed the bill Thursday, said many participants and providers in the health system will face higher costs and be worse off than under the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare.