Trump officials approve Maryland proposal to shore up ObamaCare markets

Trump officials approve Maryland proposal to shore up ObamaCare markets
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The Trump administration on Wednesday approved a request from Maryland officials aimed at shoring up the ObamaCare markets.

The proposal, effective Jan. 1., is aimed at helping insurers cover the costs of expensive claims in an effort to prevent premiums from increasing. 

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Maryland officials said the approval of the program will prevent increases of up to 30 percent in the state's individual insurance market. 

“With our innovative new reinsurance program, the health insurance market in Maryland will finally have the chance to be competitive and dynamic,” Gov. Larry Hogan (R) said Wednesday in a statement. 

“These cost reductions and this competition will lead to more insurers entering the market and make healthcare more affordable for all Marylanders.”

The Trump administration has approved similar programs in six other states, but Maryland's will be the largest and is valued at $462 million. 

The program will become active this year and run through 2020, Hogan's office said. 

"[The administration] is committed to giving states the flexibility they need to shield their citizens from ObamaCare's skyrocketing premiums," said Seema Verma, an official at the Department of Health and Human Services. 

"The reinsurance waiver we approved today will provide immediate help to Marylanders being priced out of coverage, and I appreciate Governor Hogan's leadership in making Maryland the seventh state to gain approval for such a waiver."