The U.S. House agreed Wednesday by a voice vote to pass a bill that could spur the creation of new state health insurance pools for high-risk residents.[@@]
The bill, H.R. 3204, would increase funding for all state risk pools and provide startup funds for new pools. The bill was introduced by Rep. John Shadegg, R-Ariz.
The Senate passed a similar bill, S. 288, in February.
Lawmakers who spoke in favor of the bill on the House floor Wednesday estimated that 31 to 33 states now have risk pools for residents with serious health problems who are unable to qualify for coverage from ordinary health insurers.
H.R. 3204 would provide:
- $1 million in administrative funds for the establishment of new risk pools in states without risk pools.
- $15 million in seed grant money for each new risk pool.