On Wednesday, August 1, 2018, the Trump administration issued final rules that permit the sale of several health insurance policies, which disregard the Affordable Care Act, and do not necessarily cover prescription drugs, people with pre-existing medical conditions or maternity care.
The US President Donald Trump is of an opinion that the latest “short-term, limited-duration insurance” is capable of assisting millions of people, especially those who do not require comprehensive health insurance, which provides almost every benefit required by the health law.
Trump said, the new plans will offer “much less expensive health care at a much lower price.” As the benefits will be few, the prices may be low. Besides, insurers do not have to cover pre-existing conditions or the people who have them.
The democrats, however, mocked the new policies as “junk insurance”, and said that these policies will push healthy people away from the broader insurance market, by raising premium for sicker people and keeping purchasers at risk.
Representative of California, Nancy Pelosi, the House Democratic leader, said, “After an illness or an injury, many Americans who enroll in these G.O.P. junk health coverage plans will end up being hit by crushing medical bills, finding that they have been paying for coverage that doesn’t cover much at all.”
The current rule was issued by the Obama administration in late 2016. As per the existing norms, short term insurance cannot last for more than three months, as it was meant to be a temporary fix.
On the other hand, the limit under the new rule would be 364 days. Also, the insurers would be allowed to extend policies, if they want. The maximum duration would be 36 months, including any extensions.
Alex M. Azar II, the secretary of health and human services, said that the new options will help people, who are struggling to afford coverage under the 2010 law. He stated, “These plans aren’t for everyone, but they can provide a much more affordable option for millions of the forgotten men and women left out by the current system.”
The new rule is likely to take effect in two months, and consumers will be able to see the new policies in October or November, this year. The short-term policies will be dependent on state regulation. States can restrict their sale or require specific benefits. Moreover, some states have suggested that they plan to do so.