The repeal of ObamaCare’s individual mandate will result in 7 million more people without health insurance by 2021, according to new estimates from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO).
That number is far lower than the agency’s 2017 estimate that 13 million people would be uninsured by 2027, which came as Congress was debating the GOP tax bill.
The legislation, which was signed into law in December 2017, eliminated the financial penalty for Americans who don’t purchase insurance.
The CBO said the effect of the repeal is partially offset by increases in coverage for other reasons, mainly because more states are projected to expand eligibility for Medicaid.
Still, the CBO projected the number of people without insurance will continue to increase. In 2019, 30 million people under age 65 are projected to be uninsured, an increase from 29 million in 2018 and 28 million in 2017.
By 2020, the CBO projected 32 million to be uninsured. By 2029, the number of uninsured people is projected to grow to 35 million, or 13 percent of people under age 65.
The CBO said the increase in the uninsured is the result of the elimination of the mandate penalty, rising health insurance premiums and more people enrolling in plans that don’t meet the CBO’s definition of health insurance, such as short-term plans.
The Trump administration has touted short-term plans as an alternative to ObamaCare. The plans are cheaper, but don’t have to meet the same coverage requirements as ObamaCare plans.
Date: May 14, 2019