Democrats Defend Affordable Care Act, Pre-Existing Condition Protections

Did The ACA Create Preexisting Condition Protections For People In Employer Plans?
– Kaiser Health News

Manatt’s Joel Ario, a managing director with Manatt Health, spoke to Kaiser Health News about the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and its protections for pre-existing conditions for people with job-based insurance.

Ario is a former Pennsylvania state insurance commissioner who helped implement the ACA for the federal government. The act has recently been challenged by lawsuits questioning its constitutionality, but Democrats have countered that its protections for pre-existing conditions for people with job-based insurance are important.

Ario said that the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, or HIPAA, helped put an end to “job lock,” when people with pre-existing health conditions were afraid to leave one job with insurance for another job with insurance because the new insurance would not cover their condition or would impose long waiting periods.

Many states attempted to address the problem in the mid ’90s, but HIPAA implemented changes to pre-existing condition protections on a federal level.

“HIPAA basically ratified what most states had already done,” Ario said.

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