U.S. Sens. Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy of Connecticut have introduced legislation designed to ensure that short-term limited duration health care coverage does not exclude people with pre-existing conditions.
The senators’ Fair Care Act, which they introduced with U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin, defines short-term limited duration health care as a nonrenewable policy that does not exceed 93 days. The bill prohibits this type of coverage from denying access to people with “pre-existing condition exclusions or other discrimination based on health status.”
In introducing their bill, the senators cited a recent article in the online news platform Vox that detailed proposed regulations by the Department of Health and Human Services that would allow people to buy short-term insurance for up to 364 days. However, these policies circumvent the Affordable Care Act by giving insurance providers to either deny coverage or charge higher premiums to those with pre-existing conditions.
“The Fair Care Act protects people with pre-existing conditions from the Trump administration’s proposal to allow short-term, junk health care plans that can cost a family a fortune,” Blumenthal said in a statement. “Without any safeguards, these health care plans will cause market instability and pose yet another barrier to real, quality, and affordable healthcare coverage.”
The bill has 14 co-sponsors including Sen. Kirsten Gillilbrand of New York.