Word from Washington: HFA Joins Amicus Brief in Legal Challenge to Short-Term Health Insurance Rule

As we’ve previously reported, several lawsuits are currently pending in federal courts concerning aspects of the Affordable Care Act. One lawsuit questions whether the ACA is still valid, despite the elimination of the individual mandate penalty; other cases take an opposite tack, challenging recent Administration actions and rulemakings as inconsistent with the ACA.
Today, HFA joined with 11 other national patient advocacy organizations to file an amicus brief (“friend of the court”) in one of these lawsuits, Association for Community Affiliated Plans v. United States. This lawsuit challenges the validity of a recently-issued federal rule expanding access to short term health insurance plans. The patient groups argue that the new rule will destabilize the insurance market. It will allow younger and healthier people to flock to lower cost, barebones, nominally short term plans – while people who need comprehensive insurance, due to health conditions such as a bleeding disorder, will end up paying higher premiums or will be unable to obtain insurance entirely. The amicus brief asks the court to issue an injunction stopping the rule and preserving current limits on short term plans, due to the overwhelming risks to patients and the insurance markets as a whole.
You can read a news release about the amicus brief here. To learn more about short-term plans, please see this HFA infographic and this post summarizing HFA’s position. HFA will continue to update you regarding this and other ACA-related litigation.