Bizwomen: Johns Hopkins Hospital president not 'nervous' for healthcare over incoming White House admin

Dive Brief:

  • Johns Hopkins Hospital President Redonda Miller would like for some elements of the ACA to stay, she said in an interview with Bizwomen.
  • Miller believes parts of the healthcare law "that have been beneficial to patients" should be kept. The specifications on what those parts are were not provided. 
  • Miller is not worried about the effects of a new White House administration on the industry, according to Bizwomen, adding, "Because whatever happens, she is sure the hospital can handle it."

Dive Insight:

President-elect Donald Trump vowed to undo Obamacare throughout his campaign. On Tuesday, he tweeted the measure "is lousy healthcare."

Congress wasted no time getting started on chipping away at the measure. Senator Mike Enzi (R-WY), Chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, introduced a concurrent budget resolution on Tuesday that could pave the way for repeal of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The resolution includes instructions for committees in the Senate and House of Representatives to follow in order to put repeal through reconciliation, a “fast-track process” requiring only a simple majority in the Senate, as well as in the House.

The "repeal-and-delay" plan has caused some uproar in the hospital industry as it will present facilities with many new challenges after they had spent six years adjusting to the changes brought on by the ACA. For one, if the ACA were to be repealed without a simultaneous implementation of replacement coverage, it could end up costing U.S. hospitals billions, according to a December 2016 report from healthcare economics firm Dobson DaVanzo. Earlier this week, the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), American College of Physicians (ACP) and American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) sent a letter to point out to Congress the areas they should watch out for in their pursuit to reform healthcare, including protections for patients with pre-existing conditions. 

While Republicans have long argued the healthcare law is flawed, it has also helped to significantly reduce the number of uninsured Americans. In addition, it shifted the focus in healthcare from the quantity of services provided to the quality of those services. "I would like to hope that we will retain some of the elements that have been beneficial to patients," Miller told Bizwomen. "If not, then we’ll have to figure out how we’ll maintain that level of commitment to our patients on our own."

Senior adviser to Trump Kellyanne Conway said on MSNBC Tuesday patients that are insured under the ACA won't lose their coverage when the repeal plans go through but did not provide further details on how this would happen. "There's no question that there will be different health insurance coverage in this country under President Trump," Conway said, adding, "some people, some experts, say it could take years to complete the process."

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Filed Under: Payer Health Law Hospital Administration Policy & Regulation
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