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Latest CBO Score Confirms What We Already Know: AHCA Hurts Young Americans

May 24, 2017
Contact: Sarah Schultz,, 202.734.6510

Latest CBO Score Confirms What We Already Know: AHCA Hurts Young Americans

Today, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) confirmed that the AHCA will result in fewer people insured, market instability, and higher out-of-pocket costs for millions of Americans. The nonpartisan analysis from the CBO estimates that the AHCA would cause 23 million more Americans to lose health care coverage by 2026, including an estimated 6 million young adults.

This new analysis of the latest version of the House-passed bill confirms the catastrophic impact that the AHCA would have on young adults. Next year alone, 14 million more Americans would be uninsured. The newest changes would allow states to waive key consumer protections, paving the way for fewer benefits, higher out-of-pocket costs, and potentially millions of consumers with preexisting conditions becoming uninsured.

An estimated 31 million young adults have a preexisting condition and would be left vulnerable to much higher premiums or no insurance at all. The CBO anticipates that the MacArthur Amendment alone will result in significant market instability: in states that pursue a “MacArthur waiver,” individuals with preexisting conditions could face exorbitant premiums and out-of-pocket costs and would ultimately be uninsured. In addition, out-of-pocket spending for key services for young adults, such as maternity coverage, mental health care, and substance abuse services could increase by thousands of dollars per year — leaving financially-strapped young people with crippling medical debt.

The latest version of the House bill did nothing to alleviate the devastating cuts to Medicaid; the bill ends Medicaid expansion, leading to millions of the most vulnerable Americans losing coverage. It also fundamentally undermines the traditional Medicaid program leaving millions of children, older Americans, and people with disabilities with no viable health care options, while shifting billions of dollars to states.

Jen Mishory, Executive Director of Young Invincibles, released the following statement in response to today’s newest CBO analysis:

“Three weeks ago, House Republicans rammed the AHCA through the House of Representatives without the benefit of an independent cost estimate, and with little consideration for the millions of Americans they know will be hurt by their bill. Today, the CBO confirmed that the AHCA is still a cruel proposal that covers fewer people and will cost consumers more overall. In addition to stripping coverage from millions of young adults – harming in particular the most low-income young people – it give states the option to cut benefits that young people need the most, like maternity coverage and mental health services, as well as discriminate against those with pre-existing conditions. And for the lowest-income young adults, gutting Medicaid will leave millions without any care options whatsoever. The Senate must reject the AHCA and instead protect the gains young adults and all Americans have made in accessing health care through the ACA.”

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