The Trump administration took two actions on Thursday, Oct. 12, designed to weaken the Affordable Care Act.
President Trump signed an Executive Order directing government agencies to expand access to Association Health Plans and to expand Short-term Limited Duration Insurance to last up to a year. Both of these types of insurance fall outside of ACA protections. These plans don’t have to cover the “essential health benefits” required by the ACA, including prescriptions drugs, maternity care, and mental health and substance abuse treatment. Under short-term plans, insurers can deny coverage to those pre-existing conditions and charge more if you get sick.
Thursday evening the Trump administration also announced an immediate halt to subsidies the federal government pays to health insurers to help cover the cost of individual insurance for lower-income Americans.
Taken together, these actions threaten the stability of the health insurance market, fail to protect those who need health care the most and drive up prices for those with pre-existing conditions.
National health care and insurance organizations have condemned these moves, including the American Nurses Association, American Medical Association, American Hospital Association, National Association of Insurance Commissioners, America’s Health Insurance Plans and the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association.