Obamacare replacement would leave 23 million people uninsured by 2026

The Congressional Budget Office's analysis also found older people would see their premiums spike

Obamacare replacement would leave 23 million people uninsured by 2026

President Donald Trump talks to House Speaker Paul Ryan. Picture by: Evan Vucci/AP/Press Association Images

President Donald Trump's American Healthcare Act, which the House passed at the beginning of May, could leave as many as 23 million Americans uninsured.

Republicans were criticised for making House members vote on the bill before a full report on its effects had been published. 

According to a new report from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), Trump's promise of universal healthcare falls well short within the bill - about 14 million more people would be uninsured in 2018, increasing to 23 million in 2026.

While the revised Republican bill does bring down overall premiums in the individual market by anywhere from 4 to 20%, premiums would differ greatly based on age and income.

The bill will also impact those with pre-existing conditions. One of the last minute changes to the bill - allowing states to waive some Obamacare rules and a funding increase to help those who might be adversely affected - looks set to price them out of the market.

According to CBO, about half of Americans live in states that would not seek waivers from the Obamacare regulations prohibiting insurers from charging sick people more than healthy people and requiring certain services to be covered. About one-third of Americans live in states that would seek moderate relief from those rules.

Reacting to the analysis, Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price said in a statement:

“The CBO was wrong when they analyzed Obamacare’s effect on cost and coverage, and they are wrong again.

“In reality, Americans are paying more for fewer healthcare choices because of Obamacare, and that’s why the Trump Administration is committed to reforming healthcare.”

The CBO score will define the House bill for political purposes, and also helps set the parameters for the health care debate in the Senate.

Does the bill save money?

Ultimately, yes. The bill has to save $2 billion overall - this bill saves $119 billion over ten years.

Last week, Bloomberg reported that House leaders were holding off sending the bill to Senate until the CBO score had been announced.

The implication was that the House might have to change its bill and pass it again — or even start over.