President Donald Trump took his first steps Thursday toward fulfilling his vow to dismantle Obamacare, signing an executive order that he says will bring affordable health insurance to millions more people.
The order broadly tasks the administration with developing policies to increase health care competition and choice in order to improve the quality of health care and lower prices.
However, it could also destabilize Obamacare by siphoning out younger and healthier Americans from the exchanges.
The order, Trump said from the Roosevelt Room of the White House, would give “millions of Americans with Obamacare relief.” It would “cost the United States government virtually nothing and people will have great great health care. And when I say people, I mean by the millions and millions.”
Trump said the measures “should have been done a long time ago, and could have been done a long time ago.”
Specifically, the President is directing the Labor Department to study how to make it easier for small businesses, and possibly individuals, to join together and buy health insurance through nationwide association health plans. The department could give employers in the same industries more flexibility to offer group coverage across state lines, providing them with a broader range of policies at lower rates.