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4.2 million Americans could get $0 premiums on ACA coverage

Roughly 4.2 million people, or 27% of uninsured Americans, could get ACA coverage with a $0 premium, the Kaiser Family Foundation said yesterday. The poorest consumers are eligible for subsidies that would be big enough to cover the entire premium for a lower-tier “bronze” plan.

Yes, but: Bronze plans have high deductibles — more than $6,200 per year, on average, according to Kaiser.

  • Many of the people eligible for a bronze plan with a $0 premium would actually be better off going one level up, to a “silver” plan, where they’d have to pay part of the premium every month but could get help with their out-of-pocket costs.

My thought bubble: This is a pretty complicated calculation to ask people to do, especially those who don’t have a clear picture of how much health care they’ll need next year.