Maine House reaffirms 2011 Republican health care law that lowered costs, covered adult children and protected preexisting conditions

Maine House reaffirms 2011 Republican health care law that lowered costs, covered adult children and protected preexisting conditions

Bi-partisan passage of LD1 protects historic Republican health care law (PL90)

STATEHOUSE – Maine House Democrats and Republicans joined together today to protect the historic health care law, PL90, passed by Republicans in 2011.  The vote was 143-3. PL90 was a private sector solution that resulted in lower insurance costs after years of 20-30% increases. The law’s progress was halted when provisions of the federal Affordable Care Act (ACA) effectively replaced it.

PL90 protected individuals with pre-existing conditions and the ability of adult children to remain covered by their parents’ insurance. It also allowed people to purchase insurance across state lines, increased competition, lower premiums and deductibles for everyone, and promoted greater access to health care.

“Public Law 90 (PL 90) was a market-based solution designed to ensure that everyone has access to health insurance that is more accessible and affordable,” said Republican Leader Kathleen Dillingham. “It was designed to comply with the ACA , or remain in place if the federal law is reversed. Today’s action protects PL90 and the health insurance of individuals and families.” 

“Republican health care legislation (PL 90) was lowering costs, covering adult children and protecting people with pre-existing conditions before its progress was halted by the ACA,” said Rep. Beth O’Connor (R-Berwick). “Today’s bi-partisan vote protects health coverage for Mainers if the ACA is struck down by the U.S. Supreme Court. It also preserves a national model that can be used for a better health insurance system for everyone, one that lowers premiums, provides health care choices and improves the quality of care.”  

INTITIAL STUDIES OF PL90’S IMPACT (2012):

Analysis provided by the Bureau of Insurance comes from one of two independent actuarial studies conducted by Gorman Actuarial, LLC to assess both the impact of the federal Affordable Care Act (ACA), and PL 90 on Maine’s health insurance markets. The Gorman report on PL 90 contains several positive findings, including:

  • “The individual market reinsurance program created by PL 90 may reduce individual market premiums 12 to 15 percent.
  • In PL 90’s first year of operation, approximately 80 percent of the individual market will experience lower premiums than they would have had in the absence of PL 90.
  • PL 90 reduces premiums by more than 20 percent for 30 percent of the market. Without the [provisions in PL 90], about two-thirds of the market would receive higher premiums.
  • PL 90 accelerates growth in the individual market. Enrollment may grow 6 to 10 percent before 2014 because of lower premiums. Moreover, since these market entrants most likely will be younger and healthier, they could reduce premiums across the board by 3 to 5 percent.”

Unfortunately, the ACA overwhelmed provisions of Maine law before premiums were lowered further. LD1 essentially strikes references to the ACA in Maine law, in case it is reversed by the courts, or is repealed by Congress. 

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