News & Views

Statement by Chairman and CEO Bernard J. Tyson on the Proposed ‘Skinny’ Repeal Measure

July 27, 2017

Kaiser Permanente believes progress in health care should be judged on access, affordability and outcomes. Changes to our nation’s health care laws, therefore, should increase access to high-quality, affordable care and coverage for as many people as possible.

The “skinny” repeal measure currently being discussed in the U.S. Senate apparently does not meet any of those standards. The legislation removes the individual mandate, which would result in significant coverage losses and premium increases, without adding new policy to mitigate the impact.

Because exchanges, health plans and regulators are so close to making decisions related to 2018 rates and participation, passage of this through the Senate will be enough to cause serious harm to the individual market in the near future. This will be very disruptive to Americans who get their insurance in that market.

In the interests of our members, patients and communities, we ask policymakers to turn to a more focused agenda of stabilizing the individual insurance market. This means setting aside the current repeal process and prioritizing a legislative approach that allows for additional dialogue and cooperation.

We can and should be working together on solutions to bring us closer to the goal of more affordable, more accessible coverage to deliver the high-quality health care America expects and deserves.