WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Representative Jaime Herrera Beutler joined with House colleagues to introduce a bill today that would ensure people with preexisting conditions are guaranteed health care coverage regardless of the outcome of ongoing litigation related to the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
The Continuing Coverage for Preexisting Conditions Act of 2019, introduced today by Jaime and Reps. David Joyce, John Katko, Anthony Gonzalez and Mike Turner, would separate the preexisting conditions protections piece from the rest of the ACA. With this legislation, if a court were to rule that the ACA is unconstitutional or invalid, the preexisting conditions protections would still be enforced.
“Regardless of the status of the ACA, I’ve always believed in and supported solutions to ensure that people with preexisting conditions can access affordable, quality health care. Should Obamacare fail to pass muster in the courts, this bill would complement my previous efforts and ensure Southwest Washington residents with preexisting conditions will continue to receive the medical services they need,” Jaime said. “Obamacare has many weaknesses, has failed to deliver on too many promises, and has actually harmed Americans’ health care coverage in very real ways – but that doesn’t mean we should allow vulnerable individuals to have their coverage further disrupted. Congress should act now to make sure individuals with diabetes, cancer, asthma and other conditions that require constant and often expensive medical care don’t have the rug pulled from under them. I hope Speaker Pelosi will bring this legislation swiftly to the House floor for a vote.”
How the bill ensures continued preexisting conditions coverage:
If the ACA were to be found invalid or unconstitutional by a court, individuals with preexisting conditions may face problems accessing private insurance under three different scenarios: (1) whether or not they are offered coverage in the first place; (2) if they are offered coverage but must pay more because they have preexisting conditions; and (3) whether the offered coverage actually includes the health services that would treat their preexisting conditions.
The Continuing Coverage for Preexisting Conditions Act of 2019 would continue to protect individuals who find themselves in any of these scenarios if the ACA were to be invalidated in court.