On Tuesday the Trump Administration released a final rule that expands Association Health Plans—a health insurance product available to small businesses and other groups that is not required to provide comprehensive coverage. Association Health Plans can also charge people more for a wide variety of factors (including being a woman), and skirts critical consumer protections.
While Association Health Plans cannot charge people more for having pre-existing health conditions, plans will be allowed to base insurance rates on non-health factors like gender, age or industry. The plans are also exempt from having to cover the essential health benefits package required under the Affordable Care Act, which guarantees coverage of services like maternity and newborn care or mental health services.
At 1,000 Days we have deep concerns that this regulatory action will undermine health insurance markets and result in higher costs for those who need comprehensive health insurance most – including moms and babies. Women and young children—and all consumers—need comprehensive health insurance. Unfortunately the actions of the Trump Administration are undercutting the very protections that moms and babies need for their health and well-being.