Marcha 21, 2018

Trump's New Executive Order Aims To Expand Health Care Options

13 Octubre 2017, 06:47 | Crisanna Felipe

Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Experts also questioned whether Trump has the legal authority to expand association health plans.

Trump, claimed that the order is "starting that process" to repeal ObamaCare and will be the "first steps to providing millions of Americans with ObamaCare relief", The Hill reports.

Trump's move is likely to encounter opposition from medical associations, consumer groups and even insurers - the same coalition that has blocked congressional Republicans.

President Donald Trump signed an executive order regarding health care Thursday morning, but people are also talking about tweets he put out hours before concerning pulling aid out of hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico.

Republicans have long supported the idea to allow coverage to be sold across state lines, saying this would be the most effective way to promote competition among health insurers - particularly in areas where people buying coverage on their own only have one insurer selling plans. That could mean employers could form groups across state lines, officials said.

Dania Palanker, an assistant research professor at Georgetown University's Center on Health Insurance Reforms, said ERISA granted states the right to regulate association health plans.

The result is that healthy people would end up covered with cheap and scanty association plans while sick people were left in the normal Obamacare market that guarantees them needed benefits.

Employers participating in an AHP can not exclude any employee from joining the plan and can not develop premiums based on health conditions.

Associations could self-select by accepting only businesses with healthy employees. The order could also let more individuals buy those plans and make it easier to get skimpy short-term insurance to skirt the ACA's penalties for lack of coverage.

Trump might not sign the order; other bombastically announced executive actions have not happened.

Such plans are typically marketed to individuals who are between jobs or have a gap in coverage. The Obama administration a year ago limited the duration to 90 days. Crucially, these off-market plans would open the door for people with pre-existing health conditions to be charged higher rates. Short-term plans are not subject to some of the current federal requirements established by the Affordable Care Act. Because of excessive taxes and regulations, employers are dropping coverage.

Obamacare advocates fear that if that is allowed, it could reduce the number of healthy people buying individual health plans on Obamacare exchanges, which in turn would lead to greater price hikes than have already been seen.

Prior to Obamacare, employers used HRAs to reimburse workers for a wider array of expenses, including premiums. "Given that the law was written this way, though, I'm in favor of Trump's using that leeway in the interest of better health policy".

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