Former Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini told CNBC on Wednesday that the shortcomings of the Affordable Care Act can be addressed without completely abolishing the law.
Bertolini’s comments came a day after the Supreme Court Arguments heard In California versus Texas, the ACA, also known as Obamacare, was brought before the nation’s Supreme Court for the third time. The law seems likely to survive againAfter two conservative judges proposed to delete the individual mandate provision separately, while the rest remain.
president Donald Trump and were Republicans in Congress frequent critic of Obamacareand promised unsuccessfully for years to “repeal and replace” the health legislation advocated by the former president Barack Obama. It was incorporated into the law in 2010.
Bertolini, who before Health insurer was acquired by CVS 2018 was also critical of the Affordable Care Act. In 2017, he said Obamacare’s insurance exchanges were in a “death spiral”. according to the Washington Post. While he was at the top, the company was also full left these ACA marketplaces for health insurance.
Elected President Joe Biden, who served two terms as Obama’s vice president vowed to bolster Obamacare by increasing the number of people eligible for insurance subsidies and adding a public option that some Americans could use to buy a government-run health insurance plan similar to Medicare or Medicaid.
“My transition team will soon start working on the details so we can get started right away, get costs under control, improve access and lower the price of prescription drugs,” Biden said in a speech Tuesday.
Bertolini has his own ideas for improving Obamacare. “I think the ACA can be fixed,” he said on Wednesday. “I think we need to look into the possibility of lowering the age rating by testing Medicare for people who are older and not eligible for Medicaid.”
“I think if we had done that in the beginning, we could have done so much instead of the ACA, much cheaper because the risk mechanisms and management systems in Medicare and Medicaid work very well,” he added.
Medicare is first and foremost for people who are 65 years or older, along with some people who are younger and have disabilities. Medicaid is the health insurance program for low-income Americans, and Obamacare allowed states to expand eligibility for it. All in all, more than 20 million Americans have received health insurance coverage through the ACA.
“I think taking the bill now would be a big mistake,” said Bertolini. “I think we can fix this by aligning the risk mechanisms on both Medicaid and Medicare, and by changing the licensing requirements for Medicare, which will give us Medicare for more than ‘Medicare for All’.” Some progressives, like Senator Bernie Sanders I-Vt. Have proposed moving to a single-payer health insurance in the US called Medicare for All.
The Supreme Court is expected to rule on the recent Obamacare case in June.
– CNBC’s Tucker Higgins and Berkeley Lovelace Jr. contributed to this report.