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Focus Shifts From Obamacare Website Problems to Insurance Cancellations Focus Shifts From Obamacare Website Problems to Insurance Cancellation...

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Focus Shifts From Obamacare Website Problems to Insurance Cancellations

The president is on the defensive over his claim that individuals can keep their previous insurance plans under the ACA.

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(Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

The administration is on the defensive this week over President Obama's claim that "if you like your plan, you can keep it" under the Affordable Care Act, The Washington Post reports.

Hundreds of thousands of individuals have been receiving cancellation notices from their insurance companies recently, a number that NBC News said would grow to millions, in what appeared to be a scathing investigative report this week. "The Obama administration has known that for at least three years."

 

Yet we've all known this for at least three years, ThinkProgress pointed out in response, citing an article in The Hill from 2010 that includes the same estimates of people who could lose their current insurance plans.

Individuals may keep their "grandfathered" plans from before March 23, 2010, unless the plans change significantly and do not include protections required under the law, such as the 10 essential health benefits, and no discrimination against preexisting conditions or against gender.

The administration contends individuals losing their plans will have access to more comprehensive, higher-quality ones under the health care law, often at more affordable costs, when premium subsidies are factored in. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Administrator Marilyn Tavenner said in a House Ways and Means hearing on Tuesday that insurance cancellations have been going on long before the ACA, but now the law includes further protections for those individuals. The hearing focused more on the issue of plan cancellations than problems with HealthCare.gov. 

 

The controversy surrounding the issue of cancellations has many in a frenzy, as the administration continues to work to repair the website and maintain that coverage will be better under Obamacare. Yet if this argument continues to gain traction, a perceived broken promise could prove to be more difficult to mend than a broken website. 

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