METAIRIE, LA (WVUE) - Senator Bill Cassidy thinks President Trump's executive order that allows families to shop for health insurance across state lines will help Louisiana residents.
During a tour of a new JenCare medical facility in Metairie, the senator spoke about his own plan to overhaul health care but said while the president's order will help, his plan could improve access to health care overall.
"If we are successful in our legislative process that will replace the executive order, but in the meantime, we can't leave families hanging out to dry. Again, folks are paying $40,000 a year for health insurance, you cannot afford that if you're a middle-class citizen, so I'd like to think our legislation will eventually trump the executive order," Senator Cassidy said.
Cassidy's proposed legislation was pulled at the end of September once it was clear there would not be enough votes to approve the bill in the Senate, but he thinks there's still life for the proposal.
"You're penalized if you don't buy insurance, but you can't afford to buy the insurance. The president is trying to introduce competition, I was trying to do something different with the Graham-Cassidy bill. I think we'll have another shot at that, but the president is trying to improve the ability of a family to cover themselves, that's a good thing," Senator Cassidy said.
Some experts said the White House plan could undermine coverage on the ACA's insurance marketplaces, particularly for people with health problems. That would happen if healthy people flock to lower-cost plans with limited benefits.
Other experts said Trump's proposals appear to be modest and would have limited impact.
The steps the president outlined Thursday will take months for the federal bureaucracy to finalize in regulations. Experts said consumers should not expect changes for next year.