HHS ar­gues for keep­ing rest of ACA if man­date thrown out

Modern Healthcare - - LATE NEWS -

If the U.S. Supreme Court de­cides that it must throw out the health­care re­form law’s re­quire­ment that pri­vate in­di­vid­u­als buy in­sur­ance, then the court should also in­val­i­date pro­vi­sions in the law that force in­sur­ers to of­fer cov­er­age to al­most any­one who wants to buy it, the HHS said in a le­gal brief. How­ever, HHS ar­gued in a fil­ing with the court that the elim­i­na­tion of those three in­sur­ance pro­vi­sions should not doom the rest of the Pa­tient Pro­tec­tion and Af­ford­able Care Act, which con­tains many pro­vi­sions the agency ar­gues can stand on their own. Many op­po­nents of the law ar­gue the court should de­clare the en­tire statute void if the jus­tices rule the man­date to be un­con­sti­tu­tional. The 11th U.S. Cir­cuit Court of Ap­peals in At­lanta—the only ap­pel­late court to in­val­i­date any part of the law—ruled Aug. 12 that the rest of the law could stand with­out the man­date. HHS ar­gued in the brief that if the court finds the in­di­vid­ual man­date “sev­er­able” from the law, then it must also elim­i­nate the pro­vi­sions on “com­mu­nity rat­ing” and “guar­an­teed is­sue” of in­sur­ance, which re­quire in­sur­ers to of­fer cov­er­age with­out re­gard to health sta­tus at stan­dard­ized prices. In­sur­ance com­pa­nies have long ar­gued that forc­ing them to of­fer in­sur­ance to any­one with­out a cor­re­spond­ing in­di­vid­ual man­date to carry cov­er­age could trig­ger a fi­nan­cial “death spi­ral” for in­sur­ers, since ben­e­fi­cia­ries could buy in­sur­ance, for ex­am­ple, in the am­bu­lance on the way to the hospi­tal. The Supreme Court has granted three days of oral ar­gu­ments, March 26-28, on the con­sti­tu­tion­al­ity of the law.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.