Keep US Covered Partners Urge Biden Administration to Follow Through on Plans to Reverse Trump-Era Rules on ICHRAs, Junk Insurance
January 23, 2023
Keep US Covered is committed to enhancing quality health coverage and improving care for working Americans. The Trump Administration took steps to weaken the quality of coverage by promoting junk insurance and putting in place the Individual Coverage Health Reimbursement Arrangements (ICHRA) system that forces workers off their plans, opens the door to discrimination in the workplace and threatens the stability of the Affordable Care Act marketplace.
Keep US Covered’s campaign partners issued the following statements to encourage the Biden administration to take the necessary steps to finally end ICHRAs and junk insurance:
“The continued use of junk plans and ICHRAs needs to stop as people deserve basic coverage for prevention, acute care, and chronic care at a reasonable cost. AIDS United has historically advocated against these inadequate insurance policies, particularly junk plans, including recently with the support of the ACAP (Association for Community Affiliated Plan) v. Treasury lawsuit which was a case against the Trump-era regulation advancing these unsafe plans. As advocates for the HIV community, we want to ensure people at risk for HIV or who are living with HIV have consistent and accessible healthcare to prevent contraction of HIV, early intervention or to reach the viral suppression that saves lives. Engaging people in care and providing them with consistent accessible care is critical for reaching the national goal of ending the HIV epidemic by 2030. These plans are impediments to achieving this goal.
“In essence, with these types of plans, the premiums paid by individuals will be higher as will out-of-pocket costs. Further, there may be limits to the provider network they can access which could impact the consistency of care needed and could discourage people from continuing to engage in their care. These plans will have a devastating impact on the AIDS United community, particularly people living with and at risk for HIV.” - Carl Baloney, Jr., Vice President and Chief Advocacy Officer
American Nurses Association:
“The COVID-19 pandemic put a spotlight on the disparities that have long existed in the American health care system and nurses across the country witnessed it firsthand. The American Nurses Association (ANA) want smarter, fairer health policies that meaningfully improve health outcomes and protect quality coverage for Americans and their families.
“ICHRAs put at risk those who can least afford care to be taken off their traditional employer insurance coverage system. Junk insurance risks sky-high medical bills or incomplete coverage when people need care the most. We see these patients every day and something can be done to make their lives easier. That’s why ANA is urging the Biden Administration to act now to roll back ICHRAs and junk insurance to safeguard and strengthen health coverage, improve health equity and protect patients.” - Zina Gontscharow, Senior Policy Advisor
“ICHRAs have been advertised as a business-friendly way to provide health care coverage for workers, but in reality, they can lead to employee frustration, turnover, and risk discrimination in the workplace. With a labor market in which prospective employees have so much leverage and so many options, employee retention must be a priority for businesses. Placing employees on ICHRAs weakens employers’ positions.
“Rolling back ICHRAs will strengthen American businesses by creating better, more reliable benefits for workers.” - Elizabeth Fairchild, Executive Director.
Small Business Majority:
“Most American businesses are small businesses. They already face higher insurance costs, which make it difficult for them to offer the quality coverage their workers deserve – and ICHRAs make it even harder to attract talent.
“By taking action to roll back ICHRAs and high-risk junk insurance, the Biden Administration can help close gaps in both affordability and health care coverage which plague small businesses and burden their workers.” - David Chase, Vice President, Policy & Advocacy