Biden launches a new push to limit health care costs hoping to show he can save money for families

by Sophia Chen
health care costs

President Joe Biden unveiled a new series of initiatives aimed at curbing health care costs. These measures include cracking down on fraudulent insurance plans, providing guidance to prevent surprise medical bills, and addressing medical debt associated with credit cards.

Biden’s announcement builds upon existing efforts to limit health care expenses. The Department of Health and Human Services has released new estimates indicating that around 18.7 million older adults and Medicare beneficiaries will save approximately $400 per year on prescription drugs by 2025. This is due to the president’s implementation of a cap on out-of-pocket spending as part of the Inflation Reduction Act passed last year.

As President Biden gears up for his 2024 reelection campaign, he recognizes the concerns surrounding inflation among voters. Consequently, he has placed significant emphasis on policies that assist families in managing their expenses. Additionally, his administration has introduced various government incentives to encourage private sector development in areas such as electric vehicles, clean energy, and advanced computer chips.

In other news, an Amsterdam court has approved a plan to reduce flights at the busy Schiphol Airport, countries have agreed to reduce shipping emissions (although not sufficiently to meet warming limits), and Chinese cities have opened air raid shelters to provide relief from extreme temperatures that have led to deaths. Furthermore, 15 individuals were killed in an attack on a village in Myanmar, with the military claiming that pro-democracy fighters targeted civilians.

Republican lawmakers have criticized Biden’s policies, arguing that they have contributed to increased prices, which negatively impact families’ well-being.

To address these concerns, the Biden administration intends to restrict what it deems as “junk” insurance plans. These plans include short-term policies that may deny basic coverage to individuals transitioning between employers and in need of temporary health care coverage.

Neera Tanden, Director of the White House Domestic Policy Council, highlighted the case of a Montana man who received a $43,000 health care bill because his insurer considered his cancer a pre-existing condition. Tanden referred to such insurance as “junk” and stated that a rule would be proposed to crack down on these plans.

President Biden also announced new guidance on medical billing, which stems from the No Surprises Act passed in 2020. This guidance aims to limit the ability of insurers working with hospitals to claim that provided care was out-of-network, resulting in higher costs for customers. Health plans will also be required to disclose facility fees that often appear unexpectedly on medical bills and contribute to additional expenses.

Tanden criticized the practice, stating that it amounts to gaming the system, which is not permissible.

Additionally, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and Treasury Department are seeking information on third-party credit cards and loans specifically utilized for health care payments. The high costs and interest charges associated with these financial products can discourage individuals from seeking necessary medical treatment.

Finally, President Biden intends to highlight previous efforts to reduce health care expenses, including a plan enabling Medicare to negotiate lower prescription drug prices and implementing a $35 monthly cap on insulin costs for Medicare Part B beneficiaries.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about health care costs

What initiatives did President Biden announce to reduce health care costs?

President Biden announced several initiatives to reduce health care costs, including cracking down on scam insurance plans, providing guidance to prevent surprise medical bills, and addressing medical debt associated with credit cards. These measures aim to alleviate the financial burden on individuals and families when it comes to accessing necessary health care services.

How will the initiatives save money for families?

The initiatives introduced by President Biden are designed to save money for families by tackling various aspects of health care costs. For instance, cracking down on scam insurance plans ensures that individuals are not burdened with excessive expenses or denied coverage when transitioning between employers. Preventing surprise medical bills helps protect families from unexpected and often high medical costs. Additionally, addressing medical debt tied to credit cards aims to alleviate the financial strain that can deter individuals from seeking necessary treatment.

What are some other efforts to limit health care costs?

In addition to the recent initiatives, President Biden has implemented various measures to limit health care costs. These include allowing Medicare to negotiate lower prices for prescription drugs and capping insulin costs at $35 per month for Medicare Part B beneficiaries. These efforts aim to make essential medications more affordable for individuals and reduce the overall financial burden of health care expenses.

How will families benefit from the initiatives?

Families will benefit from the initiatives in several ways. The crackdown on scam insurance plans ensures that families have access to comprehensive and reliable health care coverage when transitioning between employers. Preventing surprise medical bills provides families with protection against unexpected and often exorbitant medical costs that can disrupt their financial stability. Addressing medical debt tied to credit cards helps alleviate the burden of high interest charges and encourages individuals to seek necessary medical treatment without financial hesitation.

How do these initiatives align with President Biden’s broader goals?

These initiatives align with President Biden’s broader goals of prioritizing the well-being and financial stability of families. By implementing measures to reduce health care costs, he aims to ease the burden on individuals and ensure affordable access to essential health services. Additionally, the administration’s focus on government incentives for areas like electric vehicles, clean energy, and advanced computer chips further reflects their commitment to promoting economic growth and addressing long-term sustainability.

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DebtFreeHope July 7, 2023 - 1:27 pm

Addressing medical debt tied to credit cards is a step in the right direction. Thumbs up, Biden!

ConcernedCitizen July 7, 2023 - 1:45 pm

Biden’s efforts 2 reduce health care costs r commendable, but will they b enuf 2 help all families?

CostConcerned July 7, 2023 - 4:56 pm

Finally! biden doin sumthin abt high insurance costs, surprise bills r a nightmare

InfoSeeker123 July 7, 2023 - 5:40 pm

Can someone explain more abt “junk” insurance plans? How r they different from regular plans?

GOP4Life July 7, 2023 - 5:41 pm

Biden’s policies r makin prices go up, hurting families. We need a change in leadership!

CleanAirNow July 8, 2023 - 2:00 am

Climate change and air pollution go hand in hand. Kudos 2 Biden for pushin clean energy.

PrescriptionRelief July 8, 2023 - 6:39 am

Lower drug costs and cap on insulin prices – Biden’s initiatives will bring relief to many.

GreenEnergyAdvocate July 8, 2023 - 7:16 am

Great 2 c Biden focusin on clean energy n electric vehicles along with health care. Go green!

MedicareSaver July 8, 2023 - 7:33 am

Thank you, Biden, 4 negotiatin lower drug prices n capping insulin costs. Helpin seniors like me.

HealthCare4All July 8, 2023 - 8:00 am

biden tries 2 limit health care costs, but wut bout quality of care??!


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