Congressman Scott DesJarlais, M.D., an advocate of patient-centered health care, who has voted to repeal Obamacare and replace it with free-market reforms that would lower insurance costs and increase consumers’ choice of plans, released the following statement in support of the Trump Administration’s announcement yesterday of a new rule allowing small businesses to create Association Health Plans:
“Republicans have made major headway repealing the worst Obamacare rules, providing more affordable alternatives to Tennessee families and small businesses. The latest change allows Association Health Plans across state lines, one employers and employees have been advocating for years, ever since Obamacare began raising taxes, fees, and insurance costs. Patients lost their doctors. Hospitals closed.
The statement continued, “The law raised premiums to pay for expensive mandates and subsidies, while limiting individuals’ choice of coverage and providers. It exempted big businesses, while punishing Mom and Pop. We’re giving small businesses and entrepreneurs freedom to create better options for an estimated four million people. And we’ll keep working to improve results for Tennesseans.”
Under the finalized Department of Labor rule, self-employed entrepreneurs, small businesses, trade associations, and other organizations may now join together across state lines to increase their bargaining power and negotiate lower rates for employees and their families, just as large businesses do. The rule will take effect this fall.
There’s more on Trump’s announcement here:
The Trump administration is close to finalizing a health insurance option for small firms and self-employed people that would cost less but could cover fewer benefits than current plans, congressional officials and business groups said. They spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the pending announcement. The Labor Department scheduled an announcement Tuesday morning.
As originally proposed, the new “association health plans” would have to cover people with pre-existing health conditions. However, they could offer narrower benefits than required under the Obama-era health law.
They could be marketed across state lines to businesses in a common industry — auto repair shops, for example — or they could be sold to self-employed people like musicians.