WASHINGTON, DC (AP/WTVQ) – President Donald Trump’s decision to end a provision of the Affordable Care Act that lowered out-of-pocket medical costs for millions of Americans has brought swift reaction from the states.
On Friday, health officials and consumers said they feared the action could chase millions away from coverage.
Attorneys general in several states, including California, Connecticut, Kentucky, Massachusetts and New York, said they planned to sue the Trump administration to keep the money flowing.
At issue is a federal subsidy for deductibles and co-pays that helps lower costs for consumers with modest incomes. The Trump administration and many Republicans say the government cannot legally continue to make the so-called cost-sharing payments.
State officials say ending the subsidies will make insurance premiums skyrocket, forcing some consumers to give up having coverage at all.
Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear released the following statement Friday afternoon:
“Today my office joined an action to force the federal government to follow the law and honor its promises.
Today’s action is not about the president. It is about making the federal government keep its promises and protect the health and prosperity of our Kentucky families. The Kentucky Attorney General’s office has a record of filing suit when the federal government harms Kentucky families, including lawsuits against the last administration.
Roughly 88,000 Kentuckians purchased health insurance through the federal exchange, many in Eastern Kentucky, specifically Elliott, Magoffin, Leslie, Clay and Rockcastle counties. If left unchallenged, these actions by the federal government will cause the health care rates to rise on these Kentucky families by nearly 20 percent.
And every Kentuckian will see increases in the cost of health insurance as companies will pass on the costs of the federal government’s refusal to live up to its word. In the end, we will pay for their broken promises.
Kentuckians face numerous health issues, and our communities are facing the worst drug epidemic our nation has ever seen. Access to affordable health care and drug treatment will move Kentucky forward. It is one of our best hopes. Now is not the time to turn our backs on hard working Kentuckians. I will continue to fight for Kentucky, its families and its future.” – Attorney General Andy Beshear.