ACA rule changes could make payer participation in exchanges more palatable
President Donald Trump's administration could attempt to alter rules established by the Affordable Care Act in order to stabilize individual insurance markets as legislators consider repeal of the health reform law, Politico reported.
The proposed changes would increase the maximum age band ratio from 3:1 to 3.49:1, place additional restrictions on extended enrollment, and allow payers to end coverage for non-payment after 30 days rather than 90 days.
- These changes are likely included in a proposed rule submitted to the Office of Management and Budget last week, although a description of that proposed rule is not yet available at Reginfo.gov.
Payers have advocated for these specific changes for some time and they are likely being considered now to encourage participation in ACA exchanges beyond 2017. However, the effort seems inconsistent with attempts by the Trump administration to begin immediately dismantling the 2010 health reform law, as evidenced by a recent executive order instructing federal agencies to relax enforcement of ACA provisions.
The proposed changes, if approved, would likely reduce coverage and make insurance more expensive for elderly people, according to Politico. They could also draw the ire of influential interest groups, such as the AARP, which recently discouraged Congress from passing a proposed bill that would relax age band limits.
If the Trump administration follows through with the proposed changes, the AARP might respond with more than a strongly-worded letter. AARP legislative counsel David Certner told the Hill that the AARP would “consider litigation” if the Trump administration attempts changes that violate the text of the ACA.
As Healthcare Dive recently reported, lawmakers spearheading health reform efforts will face intense scrutiny from numerous interest groups. This move by the Trump administration shows how conciliatory efforts aimed at one of these groups could aggravate another group. With the administration also issuing executive orders that would seem to undermine ACA exchanges, it also indicates a lack of direction when it comes to priorities for health reform.
- Politico Trump administration weighs Obamacare changes sought by insurers
- The Hill AARP threatens to sue Trump administration over ObamaCare change
- Modern Healthcare Trump submits rule to stabilize individual insurance market
- The Huffington Post Trump Administration May Use Executive Authority To Tweak Obamacare’s Rules
- Healthcare Dive What Trump's executive order could mean for the ACA
- Healthcare Dive Hospital execs worry ACA replacement won't restore funding