Registering “strong objections,” the National Partnership for Women & Families warned in comments filed today that the Trump administration’s proposed rule on short-term, limited-duration insurance plans will result in millions of women and families purchasing junk plans that discriminate in pricing and fail to cover essential women’s health services, such as birth control and routine maternity care. The rule would also take younger, healthier purchasers out of the Affordable Care Act (ACA)-compliant marketplace, raising premiums for all those who remain, the National Partnership warns.
Short-term, limited-duration plans are designed to provide temporary health insurance during unexpected gaps in coverage. They are exempt from the definition of individual health insurance coverage under the ACA, and do not have to comply with the law’s core provisions. The new rule would exacerbate problems with these plans in serious and harmful ways, the National Partnership charges in its comments, leaving more women with health insurance plans that fail to meet their needs.
“This is a dangerous and discriminatory rule that would cause more women to fall victim to predatory practices and put millions of people at risk of purchasing skimpy, junk plans that leave them in the lurch when they need coverage the most,” said National Partnership President Debra L. Ness. “It would allow insurers to market inadequate plans that exclude coverage for pre-existing conditions, discriminate based on gender and gender identity, limit coverage for essential women’s health services, have high out-of-pocket costs and impose annual and lifetime limits on coverage. That is not what this country’s women and families need. The Trump administration should rescind this rule.”
“This rule is part of the Trump administration’s deplorable campaign to sabotage the ACA – the greatest advance for women’s health in a generation,” Ness continued. “It is one more in a long series of shameful moves the administration and its allies in Congress have taken to deny women and families the affordable health care they urgently need.”
If the rule is not rescinded, the National Partnership’s comments encourage the administration to:
- Not expand short-term, limited-duration plans to more than three months and never allow them to continue for a year or longer, including with renewals;
- Make consumer notices explicit, and post them in multiple languages, so consumers will know about the ACA requirements that do not apply to short-term plans; and
- Delay the effective date of the rule until 2020.
About the National Partnership
The National Partnership for Women & Families is a nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy group dedicated to promoting fairness in the workplace, reproductive health and rights, access to quality, affordable health care and policies that help women and men meet the dual demands of work and family. More information is available at NationalPartnership.org.