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U.S. freezes payments to ACA insurers with sicker patients

July 9, 2018

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(Bloomberg)—Affordable Care Act insurers are facing a fresh round of uncertainty that could drive up premiums or push companies to stop offering coverage through the law, after the Trump administration’s latest move to cut off subsidies meant to help stabilize insurance markets.

On Saturday, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services said a months-old federal court ruling would force it to suspend what are known as risk-adjustment payments, worth about $10.4 billion for 2017. The payments are part of a program in the Affordable Care Act meant to help balance the insurance markets when some insurers inevitably got stuck with sicker, more costly patients.

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