UPDATE (05/09/19): In a 230 to 183 vote, the House has passed HR 986. The legislation now moves to the Senate for consideration.
Last fall, the Trump administration approved a new rule allowing consumers to use Affordable Care Act tax subsidies to purchase short-term health insurance plans. These substandard plans can charge people with preexisting conditions higher premiums and aren’t required to cover essential health benefits like maternity, mental health, or hospital services. Healthcare advocates have warned that the proliferation of these junk plans steers healthy people away from the long-term insurance market, which in turn drives up prices for sicker consumers. Short-term plans also put buyers at risk for financial devastation in case of an accident or an illness like cancer; for example, one short-term insurance plan buyer faced $200,000 in bills after their insurer declined to cover the vast majority of their heart surgery costs.
Democrats in the House and Senate have introduced the Protecting Americans with Pre-existing Conditions Act (H.R.986/S.466) to prohibit the use of ACA subsidies to pay for junk plans. Urge your representatives to support this legislation and protect the ACA—and consumers—from the Trump administration’s ongoing attempts at ACA sabotage.