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04.09.2018 / Press Release

Trump Administration Finalizes Rule Making It Harder for People with Preexisting Conditions to Get Meaningful Health Coverage and Finalizes Policies that Allow for Other Abuses from Insurance Companies

Washington, D.C. —This week, the Trump administration finalized yet another set of policies that will strip away consumer protections for people who are buying health insurance on their own and small businesses. The Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters rule, which is issued annually by the Department of Health and Human Services, sets standards for 2019 health plans sold in the marketplaces created under the Affordable Care Act. In particular, this final rule will weaken essential health benefit standards, hurting all consumers —especially people with preexisting conditions. It will also decrease access to unbiased, community Navigators to provide enrollment assistance and allow insurers to implement large premium increases without oversight. View our analysis of the impact of this rule.

Following is the statement of Frederick Isasi, executive director of Families USA:

“This new policy from the Trump administration could make it much harder for people who have preexisting conditions to get meaningful coverage that they can afford and find useful. It allows states to give insurance companies options to pick and choose what benefits they’ll cover. People with preexisting conditions will again need to fight for the benefits they need and currently have.

“At the same time the administration is literally making it easier for insurers to raise premiums on consumers without oversight, destabilizing families’ budgets and possibly pricing them out of coverage.

“And if that’s not enough, starting next year, the rule takes away access to free, unbiased help enrolling in a marketplace health plan with a local community expert. These experts, called Navigators, have been trained to navigate the complicated health insurance process and understand the uniqueness of each community. Getting rid of this effective program could take away the ability for communities to help themselves get covered and stay covered in a plan the best fits the families’ needs and budgets.”