Senior Policy Analyst
I’ve already explained that if the pending House bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) becomes law, plans that people buy on their own will be far skimpier — as bad as, or worse than, before the ACA. That’s because the bill would eliminate the ACA’s essential health benefits requirement, meaning insurers would no longer have to cover the full set of benefits they do now — including maternity services, prescription drugs, mental health and substance abuse treatment, and hospital care. Now, let’s recall just what plans in the individual insurance market looked like before the ACA’s market reforms took effect in 2014.
Here are a few examples, drawn from plan documents and news reports:
Before the ACA, large gaps in benefits were common, cost-sharing charges were sky-high, and people who thought they had meaningful health insurance were surprised to find their plans didn’t cover the very services they needed when they were sick.
The ACA has made tremendous progress in addressing those problems. The House Republican bill would bring them right back.