President Donald Trump announced plans Friday to expand health care for small business and workers through health reimbursement arrangements (HRA).
Trump said that the expansions of HRAs would allow families to start shopping around for health care plans that they wanted and to get reimbursed by their employers.
“It’s popular, it’s really, really been a success,” Trump said, noting that the Obama administration leveled penalties for HRAs, making it essentially unworkable.
The president held an announcement ceremony in the Rose Garden.
Trump said the decision would help expand the level of coverage, particularly for small businesses, calling it a “monumental” achievement.
The president brought to the podium small business owners, who explained that the new rules would help them considerably. One businessman noted that after the Obama administration hurt the HRA option, he lost employees because they needed better healthcare options.
Trump warned Americans away from free government healthcare plans proposed by Sen. Bernie Sanders, pointing out that it would lead to socialism.
“That’s going to hurt a lot of people,” Trump said, warning of worse care and long wait times under a government-run system.
“We have to reject the socialist model,” Trump said, calling for freedom of choice and access to the best health care plans.
“We are putting the people back in charge with more choice, at better care, at a much lower cost,” he said.
The audience at the event surprised the president by singing Happy Birthday, as he turned 73 on Friday.