The Senate Finance Committee has posted the legislative language of S. 1796 — the 1,502-page America’s Healthy Future Act bill — on its website.
The committee staff directed the AHFA bill proposal under the direction of Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, D-Mont. For weeks, the proposal was simply a rough summary, with no bill number. Republicans complained that they had not seen actual bill provisions.
The text of the bill is now available at //finance.senate.gov/press/Bpress/2009press/prb101909.pdf
The bill number probably will be S. 1796, according to press reports.
The bill is so long that the table of contents takes up more than 12 pages and includes six different divisions, or “titles.”
Title I deals with health care coverage; Title II, with disease prevention and wellness; Title III, with improving the quality and efficiency of health care; Title IV, with transparency and program integrity; Title V, with fighting waste, fraud and abuse; and Title VI, with revenue provisions.
The bill calls for using a combination of coverage mandates, government health program expansion, state health insurance cooperatives, and subsidized health insurance purchasing “exchanges” to try to increase the percentage of U.S. residents who have health coverage.
One provision, Section 2226, would permit a state to opt out of the health exchange system program and other reform requirements, if the state could come up with another method of providing comprehensive coverage for residents that could do at least as well at the exchange system at providing affordable health coverage for all residents and increasing the number of uninsured residents who end up with coverage.