Patient Groups Echo Dem. Senators’ Push on ACA’S Anti-Discrimination Efforts

Over 120 patient groups urged the Department of Health and Human Services to enforce non-discrimination provisions of the Affordable Care Act in a letter, following more than a dozen Democratic senators who pushed a similar position last week.

The groups also wrote that they were pleased with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services plans to review adequate prescription drug coverage of quality health plans and encouraged CMS to require plans to offer an out-of-pocket cost comparison tool.

The “I Am Essential” coalition sent the letter, signed by 124 organizations, responding to an HHS draft 2017 letter to issuers in the federally-facilitated marketplaces. The comment period on the draft closed Jan. 17.

“Based on three years of plan data and the experiences of patients, we believe several issuers continue to violate the ACA by discriminating against people with chronic conditions and other serious illnesses through their plan design,” the letter reads. “While we are pleased with the patient protections included in the Draft 2017 Letter to Issuers, to be meaningful, they still need to be enforced.”

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