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AARP: Senate’s Age Tax Would Slam Seniors

June 27, 2017, 1:52 PM HST
* Updated June 27, 1:55 PM
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The United States Capitol Building. iStock photo provided by AARP Hawaii.

A new analysis of the Senate’s proposed healthcare bill shows that older Hawai‘i residents would be forced to pay much higher premiums or go without health insurance coverage.

With the proposed spike in premiums and reduced tax credits—the age tax—a 60-year old Hawai‘i resident with a $45,000 annual income could have to pay up to $5,504 more for health insurance in 2020.

The new analysis by AARP’s Public Policy Institute looks at expected increases in premiums and out-of-pocket costs for older people in Hawai‘i by income level, if those people chose to keep their current coverage. The projected premiums also reflect the Age Tax contained in the Senate bill—an increase that lets insurers charge older policyholders five times more than everyone else for their insurance.

“Forcing people over 50 to pay thousands more will mean many people in Hawai‘i will not be able to afford to go to the doctor, fill their prescriptions or get the care they need,” said AARP Advocacy Director Audrey Suga-Nakagawa. “We thank Sens. Brian Schatz and Mazie Hirono for their opposition to this higher cost, less coverage bill.”

The AARP Public Policy Institute’s report can be found online.

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Also today, AARP sent a letter to all 100 Senators in response to the Congressional Budget Office score of the Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017, urging them to vote no on the bill.

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Download the analysis spreadsheet here.

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