President Trump has decided not to reopen the state-level health insurance exchanges run by the federal government, a White House aide said Tuesday. No reason for the decision was given, Politico reported.
Trump suggested last week that due to the coronavirus pandemic he was considering such a move, which would affect the 32 states that rely on HealthCare.gov to sell Obamacare plans to residents. Nearly a dozen other states that run their own exchanges, including Massachusetts, New York and Washington, have reopened their insurance marketplaces as they grapple with a surge in job losses and increased demand for medical care. Under normal circumstances, the exchanges close at the end of the enrollment period in December.
The Affordable Care Act allows for people who lost their private health insurance because they were laid off to sign up for publicly subsidized plans throughout the year. But millions of Americans who have gone without insurance, or who have less expensive short-term plans that may provide little coverage for hospitalization, may now want to sign up for comprehensive insurance amid the pandemic emergency.
Trump continues to oppose the landmark health care program signed into law by his predecessor, and his administration supports an ongoing lawsuit that, if successful, would invalidate the Affordable Care Act in its entirety.