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Life Health > Health Insurance

Ways and Means to mark up CO-OP bill

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Members of the House Ways and Means Committee are getting ready to highlight the problems at the Affordable Care Act Consumer Operated and Oriented Plan program.

The committee plans to mark up House Resolution 954 at 10 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time Thursday, at a meeting on Capitol Hill, according to a hearing notice.

H.R. 954 would exempt consumers from the Affordable Care Act individual shared responsibility penalty if the consumers lost their health coverage due to the failure of a CO-OP carrier.           

Related: House Democrat tears into chief

In the past, Rep. Kevin Brady (R-Texas), the Ways and Means chairman, has blasted Obama administration officials over what he has called bad CO-OP program financial decisions and program execution.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, one of the two major pieces of legislation in the ACA package, requires many people to have what the government classifies as “minimum essential coverage,” or solid major medical coverage, for much of the year or else pay a penalty.

The 2010 law also provided startup loan funding for the CO-OP program. The CO-OP program was supposed to help increase the level of competition in the private health insurance market by creating a new type of nonprofit, member-owned health insurer.

The ACA and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services regulations have imposed many restrictions on CO-OP carriers’ activities, and the CO-OPs have also suffered from the effects of ACA regulations and HHS program management decisions that have rocked older, larger health insurers in the past few years.

Earlier this summer, officials said that all but one of the 23 CO-OPs funded had either failed or were getting extra regulatory attention.


Video: ACA hearing witness says Congress is ‘under literal siege’

Chaffetz accuses HHS of resisting CO-OP document subpoena

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