Hartzler Applauds Recent Administration Actions to Help Lower Health Care Costs
HARRISONVILLE, MO – Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler (MO-04) applauded the Trump Administration’s actions to lower health care costs, citing new U.S. Departments of the Treasury, Health and Human Services, and Labor rule proposals expanding the usability of health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs). HRAs allow employees to be reimbursed by their employers for healthcare expenses in a tax-advantaged way. The proposed rule would permit HRAs to reimburse employees for the cost of individual health insurance coverage, which was prohibited by the previous administration.
“Making HRAs more flexible and allowing them to be used to purchase insurance will lower the cost of healthcare services and empower Americans to choose health plans that work for them,” said Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler, who has been an advocate for increasing transparency in medical costs. “The need for quality, affordable health care continues to be a leading issue with Missouri families, and this new flexibility will help make healthcare more affordable for the American people” added Hartzler.
The proposed rule is part of the Presidential Executive Order Promoting Healthcare Choice and Competition Across the United States, which was signed on October 12, 2017. This order has been the main tool the Administration has used to lower healthcare costs and increase provider options for the American people. In addition to HRAs, it prioritized expanded access to association health plans (AHPs) and short-term, limited duration insurance (STLDI) plans. Final rules were issued earlier this year on AHPs and STLDIs.
“The AHP rule allows small businesses to band together by geography or industry and create health plans as if they were a single large employer. As many as 4 million people could gain coverage under these new plan offerings in the coming years. Through the STLDI rule, Americans will also have access to short term plans, which will offer even greater flexibility and control over an individual’s healthcare options,” said Hartzler.
For more information on these rules and executive orders, the White House has provided additional details, which can be viewed here.