Sen. Cruz's Consumer Freedom and HSA Provisions Included in Latest Draft of Senate Health Care Bill
Issues statement on revised version of the Better Care Reconciliation Act
July 13, 2017
WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) released the following statement regarding the revised version of the Better Care Reconciliation Act, introduced today by the U.S. Senate:
"For nearly five months, I have been working closely with my Senate colleagues from across the ideological spectrum to honor our commitment to voters, to provide more choices for consumers, put people in control of their healthcare, and most importantly, lower health insurance premiums.
"I am encouraged that the revised bill ensures consumers have the freedom to choose among more affordable plans that are tailored to their individual healthcare needs, and expands health savings accounts so that consumers can pay health insurance premiums on a pre-tax basis.
"This is a critical step in the right direction and I will continue to work closely with my colleagues to unite our conference around a bill that can pass, and that honors our promises and that truly lowers premiums, which is crucial to providing relief from Obamacare."
Obamacare's insurance mandates caused premiums to skyrocket. To address this problem, the Senate's bill should allow consumers to buy and issuers to sell health insurance free from Obamacare's insurance regulations, but subject to state law, while providing consumers with the choice to buy plans subject to Obamacare's insurance regulations, including preexisting conditions, with subsidies and other assistance.
Specifically, under Consumer Freedom:
• If an insurer sells a sufficient number of Obamacare-compliant plans within a rating area on a state's exchange, then that insurer may sell any other plan within that rating area that consumers desire off exchange (Freedom Plans).
• These Freedom Plans will still be subject to state insurance protections. Premiums of applicable Freedom Plans may be paid from HSAs.
• Obamacare's insurance regulations, including preexisting conditions, are maintained for on-exchange plans, and consumers have the choice to buy plans subject to these regulations on Obamacare's exchanges.
• In order to reduce costs, these on-exchange Obamacare-compliant plans will continue to receive federal premium tax credits and dedicated sources of federal stability funding.