UPDATE 2-US Senate Republicans to issue revised health bill to win support-aide

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WASHINGTON, June 26 (Reuters) - U.S. Senate Republicans plan to issue a revised version of their healthcare bill on Monday, according to a Republican Senate aide, as the chamber's leaders scrambled to get legislation passed ahead of a July 4 holiday recess starting on Friday.

The aide, who is familiar with the plan, did not provide details of changes in the works. Politico reported that a likely change to the bill would be to add a provision to encourage people, mainly those who are young and healthy, to enroll in insurance plans.

President Donald Trump and his fellow Republicans in Congress have been pushing to repeal and replace Obamacare, Democratic former President Barack Obama's signature domestic legislation. The House of Representatives passed its version of a healthcare bill last month.

The Senate bill unveiled last week was immediately criticized by both conservatives and moderates in the party. With Republicans holding only a 52-seat majority in the 100-seat Senate, the bill was unlikely to win passage in its initial form.

At least four conservative Republicans have expressed opposition to the draft legislation, saying it does not go far enough in repealing Obamacare.

A spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell would not comment on whether a vote on a bill would be held in the full Senate on Thursday, as originally anticipated.

The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office later Monday might release its assessment of the bill's cost and impact on future budget deficits. It was not clear whether the report will also estimate how many people might lose healthcare coverage under the legislation or whether that estimate would come later.

Meanwhile, some moderate Republicans have either withheld judgment or expressed doubts about replacing Obamacare with legislation that is similar to the House version.

They are concerned that the party's approach to healthcare would cause too many people, and especially those with low incomes, to lose insurance. Trump touted passage of the House bill as a victory but later called it "mean."

Republicans have targeted Obamacare since it was passed in 2010, viewing it as costly government intrusion and saying individual insurance markets are collapsing. The legislation expanded health coverage to some 20 million Americans, through provisions such as mandating that individuals obtain health insurance and expanding Medicaid, the government program for the poor.


As he did during the House negotiations, Trump has personally pushed for a Senate bill, calling fellow Republicans to mobilize support.

In the efforts by Senate Republicans to push through a bill, the party has split over a provision in the draft bill ending federal funding of Planned Parenthood, the women's healthcare provider, for one year.

Moderates are wary of this, while conservatives have called for an end to federal funding of Planned Parenthood because it provides abortions, even though they are not performed with taxpayer dollars.

Health insurance companies are concerned about the bill's plan to cut Medicaid and any impact on state governments as well as the prospect of losing Obamacare's mandate on individuals to buy insurance without creating alternative incentives for people to stay in their plans.

If the Senate passes a bill, it will either have to be approved by the House, the two chambers would have to reconcile their differences in a conference committee, or the House could pass a new version and bounce it back to the Senate.

The House is also controlled by Republicans but faced a similar balancing act between moderates and conservatives to pass its version.

A Republican leadership aide in the House said if the Senate manages to pass a healthcare bill this week, no decision has been made on when the House might schedule a vote on it or whether House Republicans might seek any changes to the Senate measure.

(Writing by Richard Cowan and Frances Kerry; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)