7.6 C
Washington,US
Sunday, November 19, 2017
Home News Politics Cheaper health insurance that covers less could be a risky “bargain”

Cheaper health insurance that covers less could be a risky “bargain”

0
0


CLOSE

President Donald Trump has signed an executive order that aims to make lower-premium health care plans available to more Americans.
Time

 

Healthy people who don’t get many or any subsidies to buy insurance on the Affordable Care Act exchanges could soon have cheaper alternatives thanks to the new executive order President Trump signed Thursday. But the plans often won’t cover the sick and could make others woefully under-insured if they become ill. 

Still, it doesn’t make anything happen immediately as changes have to go through the federal rulemaking process, which could take several months and involves three different agencies. 

What it would do:  

• New regulations would allow the expansion of so-called “association health plans,” which are groups of small businesses and possibly individuals that band together to purchase insurance. These plans are governed by state insurance rules so might not have as sweeping coverage of what the ACA considered “essential health benefits,” such as maternity care or hospitalization.  Some states actually require more comprehensive benefits though. Consumers could buy these plans across state lines, although whether doctor and hospital networks would be sufficient remains a big question. 

More: Trump’s health insurance order pushes association plans to drive down costs — for some

More: Analysis: How Trump is unraveling Obamacare piece by piece

More: Analysis: How Trump is unraveling Obamacare piece by piece

Short-term plans, which are far less regulated and can only last three months now, would be allowed for up to a year. These plans could refuse to cover people with pre-existing conditions and be regularly renewed. The fear is they will pull healthier people off the ACA exchanges, which could raise premiums for others, although most get subsidies that increase as premiums do. 

Health reimbursement accounts, which allow employers to cover workers’ out of pocket health costs, would be subject to new Treasury Department rules that should make companies more inclined to set them up. 

 

 

 

Read or Share this story: https://usat.ly/2wR1jqn



Source link