GOP Health Care Law Could Cost Nearly 1 Million Jobs, Report Finds

The American Health Care Act, the GOP’s answer to Obamacare, could end up costing the U.S. economy close to 1 million jobs, researchers predicted Wednesday.

The bill, if passed as written by the House of Representatives, would start out boosting jobs and increasing economic output because it would cut taxes, the team at George Washington and The Commonwealth Fund found.

But that would change fast, the experts forecast.

“The AHCA would initially cause a brief spurt of economic growth from tax cuts, which primarily help those with high incomes,” said Leighton Ku, director of the Center for Health Policy Research at the Milken Institute School of Public Health at GW, who led the study team.

“However, cuts in funding for Medicaid and health subsidies then begin to deepen, triggering sharp job losses and broad disruption of state economies in the following years,” Ku added.

“Within a decade, almost a million fewer people would have jobs. The downturn would hit the health care sector and states that expanded Medicaid the hardest.”

Related: Here’s What the AHCA Would Do

Health care has added an average 22,000 jobs a month so far in 2017, compared to an average monthly gain of 32,000 in 2016,” the Bureau of Labor Statistics said in its May statement. That adds up to 329,000 jobs over the past year.

Image: Changes in Total and Health Care Employment Due to the American Health Care Act, 2018 to 2026

Changes in total and health care employment due to the American Health Care Act, 2018 to 2026