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The President of the United States recently signed an executive order that is related mainly to health insurance.   The order does not change the Affordable Care Act law.  The ACA mandates, tax credits, penalties, and other provisions continue.  The order directs certain government entities to move towards expansion of health reimbursement arrangements (already available), expansion of small employer association health plans across state lines (already available), and expansion of the short term limited medical plans.  The short term medical plans were available for many years, up to 6 months until the government reduced the maximum coverage period to no more than 90 in April 2017.  The short term plans can be about 1/3 of the lowest cost qualified bronze plan, but pre-existing conditions are not covered, and the short term medical plans also have other risks.  If the short term plans are extended again to 6 month or 12 month participation periods, then enrollment from healthy consumers may increase, and create a disproportionate claims problem in the qualified plan member group.  The penalty for not having a qualified plan should also continue which is currently 2.5% of household gross income for the number of months without a qualified plan, not counting the first two months without a qualified plan.  In response to the order, Oregon State government is taking steps to work with the Insurance Division to find as much stabilization for Oregonian's as possible.  We will need to wait for the due process of law and government procedures before we can have more certainty about the future of health insurance in this country for the future. PL

Posted 10:20 PM

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