As you know, the American Health Care Act (AHCA) was introduced March 6, 2017 as the bill that would repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The U.S. House of Representatives voted on and passed this bill on May 4, 2017. Subsequently, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released their review of AHCA, prompting some Senate legislators to voice concern over the bill in its current state. Revisions were expected and those revisions are now drafted.
The Senate’s revised draft of the AHCA bill, titled Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA), was draftedby Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and released on Thursday, June 22, 2017. Some BCRA highlights include:
The CBO should be releasing their estimate of the BCRA this week, perhaps as early as today.
The Senate is fast-tracking this bill so a vote could take place as early as next week. They want the vote to be done prior to their July 4th recess or support for the legislation could be lost. Currently, it doesn’t look like there is enough Republican support for the bill to pass.
If the BCRA is passed by Senate, it will go back to the House. Three things could happen: House can pass the bill as-is, pass another version of the bill and send to the Senate for a vote, or have key leadership in both chambers have private negotiations to find a middle ground that will achieve agreement on both sides. Lawmakers hope to pass the final legislation for this bill by the end of July.
NIS will continue to monitor the situation and keep you informed. Contact your NIS Consultant if you have any questions.