New Senate Health Care Bill Addresses Americans’ Top Health Care Concerns

Statement of Robert Restuccia, executive director of Community Catalyst, in response to the introduction of the Consumer Health Insurance Protection Act, sponsored by Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Kamala Harris (D-CA), Maggie Hassan (D-NH) and Bernie Sanders (I-VT). The bill would make health insurance more affordable and strengthen consumer protections.

“While President Trump continues his relentless, deliberate efforts to sabotage people’s health care, Senators Warren, Baldwin, Gillibrand, Harris, Hassan and Sanders today introduced legislation that builds on the foundation of the Affordable Care Act through policies that put consumers’ health and wellbeing first. The comprehensive bill would address some of the most pressing issues consumers face in the health insurance market today by making health insurance more affordable through enhanced financial assistance and placing limits on out-of-pocket costs for prescription drugs. It would improve access to care by implementing plan participation requirements and strengthen consumer protections from surprise out-of-network bills.

“The legislation would also make important strides toward unraveling the damage caused by President Trump’s actions to prioritize junk insurance plans over comprehensive coverage and undermine enrollment in the ACA marketplaces. It would help restore stability to the ACA marketplaces by increasing the open enrollment period, restoring funds for a marketing, outreach and consumer assistance, and prohibiting the expansion of junk insurance coverage.  

“This bill also stands in stark contrast to congressional Republicans’ marketplace stabilization proposals that lack critical consumer protections and impose new restrictions on women’s access to reproductive health services.

“Senator Warren and the bill’s cosponsors understand that Americans shouldn’t have to sacrifice comprehensive coverage for cheaper premiums. We applaud their efforts to advance real health care solutions that would both address consumers’ concerns and help stabilize the marketplace. We urge Senators on both sides of the aisle to move this bill forward for consideration.”

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About Community Catalyst
Community Catalyst is a national, non-profit consumer advocacy organization founded in 1998 with the belief that affordable quality health care should be accessible to everyone. We work in partnership with national, state and local organizations, policymakers, and philanthropic foundations to ensure consumer interests are represented wherever important decisions about health and the health system are made: in communities, courtrooms, statehouses and on Capitol Hill. For more information, visit www.communitycatalyst.org. Follow us on Twitter @healthpolicyhub.

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