Trump at the White House in September. Photo: Alex Brandon / AP

President Trump will issue a new executive order this week rolling back a handful of Obama-era health care policies and expanding access to cheaper, less comprehensive insurance plans, The Wall Street Journal reports.

What it means: Association health plans and short-term insurance function similarly: They create lower-cost, less comprehensive options that are most likely to appeal to healthy people.

The details of the order, according to WSJ, are that it will:

  • Direct federal agencies to expand access to association health plans, which would be exempt from many of the Affordable Care Act's coverage requirements.
  • Expand access to short-term health plans, which also cover a more limited set of benefits, with a lower premium. President Obama limited those plans to 90 days; Trump will likely allow people to buy them for up to a year.
  • Allow consumers to use tax-preferred health savings accounts to pay their premiums.

The fear — among Democrats as well as insurance companies — is that those healthier consumers would choose these new plans and leave only sicker, more expensive consumers buying comprehensive coverage through the ACA's exchanges. If that happens, expect insurers to raise their rates or look for the exit.

Go deeper

8 hours ago - Health

Fauci says if people won't wear masks, maybe it should be mandated

Anthony Fauci. Photo: Graeme Jennings- Pool/Getty Images

NIAID director Anthony Fauci told CNN on Friday evening that if "people are not wearing masks, then maybe we should be mandating it."

Why it matters: Fauci made the comments the same day the U.S. hit its highest daily COVID-19 case count since the pandemic began.

Harris to Black voters: Casting a ballot is about honoring your ancestors

Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris speaks at a "Get Out The Vote" rally at Morehouse College. Photo: Elijah Nouvelage/AFP via Getty Images

Sen. Kamala Harris appealed to Black voters in Georgia on Friday, urging them to "honor the ancestors" by casting ballots, and again calling President Trump a "racist."

Why it matters: The U.S. saw a significant decline in African-American voter turnout between 2012 and 2016, reaching its lowest point since 2000. Higher turnout among Black Americans this year could tip the balance in favor of Democrats in key battleground states, including Georgia.

Updated 8 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Politics: Fauci: Trump hasn't been to a COVID task force meeting in months.
  2. Sports: The youth sports exodus continues — Big Ten football is back.
  3. Health: U.S. hits highest daily COVID-19 case count since pandemic began —AstraZeneca to resume vaccine trial in U.S.How to help save 130,000 lives.
  4. Retail: Santa won't greet kids at Macy's this year.
  5. World: Spain and France exceed 1 million cases.

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