President Bush referred briefly to health coverage Tuesday during his State of the Union address.
In a speech dominated by talk about national security, the president repeated previous calls to improve health savings account tax breaks and create a system of national association health plans that would give small employers access to the same freedom from Employee Retirement Income Security Act requirements that large, self-insured health plans now enjoy.
The president also emphasized the value of limiting medical malpractice suits, making health coverage more portable and promoting use of electronic patient records and other health information technology.
In supporting documents, Bush suggested expanding HSA tax breaks to, for example, let employers contribute more to HSAs for employees with chronic illnesses.
Karen Ignagni, president of America’s Health Insurance Plans, Washington, is praising comments about HSAs and medical malpractice reform.