Biden Rolls Back Trump’s “Junk” Short-Term Health Insurance Plans

( – The Biden administration is rolling back former President Donald Trump’s short-term health insurance plans, which the Biden administration calls “junk insurance.”

Regulations passed by the Obama administration limited the use of short-term plans to less than three months, intending the plans to be used as temporary safety nets for people to avoid gaps in health coverage.

However, in 2018, Trump expanded the duration of short-term plans, which do not have to meet the consumer protection requirements of ObamaCare, to less than one year, allowing them to be renewed for up to 36 months in total. The new rule reverses Trump’s expansion.

Unveiled by President Joe Biden in 2023 as part of a series of actions aimed at lowering healthcare costs, the new rule limits new sales of the short-term health insurance plans to three months with the option of renewing the plan for a maximum of four months total. Consumers must be provided with clear explanations of their benefits under the plan and how they can find more comprehensive coverage.

The rule will only apply to new short-term plans, and anyone with short-term plans currently will not see changes in their policies.

White House domestic policy adviser Neera Tanden states that the short-term plans “misled consumers,” with people not learning there was a cap on their benefits until they needed medical care. She added that Trump’s change “really hurt consumers.”

However, Republican Louisiana Sen. Bill Cassidy said the new rule takes away people’s choices and forces Americans into a “one-size-fits-all approach.”

On March 27th, 7he Department of Health and Human Services also announced it had finalized a rule that standardizes applying for and renewing coverage of the Children’s Health Insurance Program, known as CHIP and Medicaid, making it easier for eligible adults and children to remain covered. Under the new rule, some of the consumer protections required by the Affordable Care Act are extended to CHIP and Medicaid enrollees, such as eliminating annual and lifetime limits for children’s coverage in CHIP.

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