Open Enrollment Extended to 1/15/19; ACA Unconstitutional?

Two health care developments this weekend: Don’t be confused:

Access Health CT, Connecticut’s insurance exchange, has extended open enrollment for 2019 health insurance through Jan. 15, 2019

Despite the recent ruling on the constitutionality of the law (see below), the Affordable Care Act, is still in effect. Subsidies to help consumers afford insurance are still available through Access Health CT and open enrollment has been extended until January 15. Coverage for those enrolling now will begin February 1. Here’s how to enroll:

Texas Case Raises Questions About ACA Constitutionality

On Friday, a U.S. District Court judge ruled that the repeal of the financial penalty for people who did not purchase health insurance, which was contained in the 2017 revamp of federal tax law, made the entire Affordable Care Act unconstitutional. But this ruling has no immediate effect on the implementation of the law. This ruling will almost certainly be appealed and the appeal will take some time to work its way through the courts.
“The Trump administration immediately said …that it would continue to enforce the law until the appeals process plays out…. That will ensure that the American health care system, which has been operating under the law for more than five years, will not be thrown into immediate chaos.” (from NY Times article linked here)
Consumer protections, including for pre-existing conditions, continue, Medicaid expansion (HUSKY D in Connecticut) and subsidies to help consumers buy health insurance will be available in 2019.

These articles are helpful in understanding the effect of the ruling and the likely appeals path.

Health Care Moves to Center Stage - NY Times
Health Care Law Stands for Now - Vox
CT Policy Makers React - CT Mirror

Jane McNichol