Trending News Today: ACA Repeal Effort May Cut Billions in Subsidies

Top news of the day from across the healthcare landscape.

A new report from Avalere Health suggests that a majority of states would take a hit if the latest Affordable Care Act (ACA) repeal bill is signed into law, according to The New York Times. The projected $215 billion in federal subsidies through 2026 is expected to increase the uninsured rate. Avalere reported that California and New York face the steepest cuts, while West Virginia would see a $1 billion cut between 2020 and 2026.

The ACA repeal bill may provide states with a way to waive protections for patients with pre-existing conditions, which is controversial among lawmakers who oppose the bill, according to The Hill. Without a guarantee that patients would not be charged higher premiums for their conditions, experts are concerned that health insurance costs could surge. The Hill reports that the unclear definition of “adequate and affordable” care in the bill would leave the judgement call up to Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, MD.

Yesterday, Pfizer files a lawsuit against Johnson & Johnson alleging that the manufacturer was using anti-competitive tactics to prevent an emerging biosimilar for infliximab (Remicade), according to The Washington Post. Infliximab-dyyb (Inflectra) was the second biosimilar approved by the FDA. Despite the lawsuit, J&J said that the allegations were baseless. If Pfizer wins the lawsuit, it could discourage similar practices among other manufacturers; however, if Pfizer loses, manufacturers could continue to delay the entrance of biosimilars, according to the article.