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New Biden Admin Regulation Threatens Access to Affordable Health Care for Millions

July 07, 2023

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Access to affordable coverage options for Americans would be severely restricted under a new proposed rule from the Biden Administration’s Department of Health and Human Services targeting short-term, limited-duration insurance (STLDI) plans that offer low-cost health coverage for millions of Americans. The proposed rule would pull back a Trump Administration rule that expanded health coverage options for Americans.

House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Jason Smith (MO-08) issued the following statement in response to the Biden Administration’s attempt to roll back affordable health coverage:

“An affordable insurance option for many Americans is now under attack by the Biden Administration, whose top-down, one-size-fits-all approach to health care has only driven up insurance premiums for millions of Americans. This new Biden rule ignores the fact that short-term, limited-duration insurance coverage is used by 1.5 million Americans and the annual cost can be nearly 60 percent more affordable than the lowest cost Obamacare plan. Imposing new restrictions on short-term plans will stifle competition, drive up costs, limit the number of lower-premium options available, and in some case outright takeaway the coverage many Americans have and can afford today.

“The American people, not Washington bureaucrats, should be the ones deciding what health care coverage is the best for themselves and their families. That is why Republicans have been working to give Americans more choices to pick coverage that fits their needs at a price they can afford. Just last month, the House of Representatives passed a package of legislation that gives Americans more flexibility and choices in their health care coverage and supports small businesses and workers looking to find affordable options. Those are the types of policies that will lower prices and make health care more accessible for the American people, not more Washington mandates.”

Background on Short-Term, Limited-Duration Insurance:

  • STLDI coverage have significantly lower premiums than Obamacare plans, providing an attractive alternative for those priced out of the Obamacare market.
  • In October 2016, the Obama Administration limited STLDI policies to durations of 3 months, with no offers of renewal, for no reason other than to force more Americans into the unaffordable Affordable Care Act (ACA) marketplace.
  • In October 2018, the Trump Administration expanded coverage durations to up to 364 days, with options to renew coverage for up to a total of three years.
  • Estimates from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, and even the left-leaning Urban Institute, have shown that the proliferation of STLDI plans leads to a net decline in the number of uninsured Americans.