AMA asks Republicans to show how they planned to replace Obamacare

The American Medical Association wants Republicans to show how they planned to replace president Barack Obama's health care law before Congress voted for its repeal, the Politico reported.

In a letter congressional leaders, AMA chief executive officer James L Madara wrote that before lawmakers dismantled the law, they should show "in reasonable detail what will replace current policies."

GOP leaders hoped to approve legislation over the next few weeks or months dismantling much of the law and it was expected to take them months or years to approve replacement legislation.

The AMA, which represented many of the nation's doctors, had supported the passage of Obama's law when it was enacted in 2010. Politico says it was the first to report the AMA letter.

Meanwhile, Paige Winfield Cunningham writes in a blog in the Washington Examiner, that the AMA acknowledged that ongoing problems with health insurance needed to be addressed, but said actions to ditch the Affordable Care Act should not result in fewer people getting health insurance. The AMA further urged lawmakers to propose a specific replacement for the law before they took actions to repeal it.

"In considering opportunities to make coverage more affordable and accessible to all Americans, it is essential that gains in the number of Americans with health insurance coverage be maintained," the AMA wrote in a letter to house speaker Paul Ryan, Republican Wisconsin, house minority leader Nancy Pelosi, Democrat California, senate majority leader Mitch McConnell, Republican Kentucky, and senate minority leader Chuck Schumer, Democrat-New York.

The US uninsured rate had fallen from about 16 per cent to around 9 per cent under the healthcare law, a major success often cited by its supporters. At the same time, the insurance marketplaces had been hit by soaring premiums and reduced competition, prompting widespread calls for changes.