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Jaime Herrera Beutler Introduces Resolution to Preserve Association Health Plans as an Affordable Option for Small Businesses
Hundreds of thousands of Washington residents, most small businesses that offer health care use Association Health Plans
Jaime Herrera Beutler announced today that she has introduced a legislative resolution to preserve and promote Association Health Plans, which allow small businesses to band together to offer high-quality, affordable health care to employees and their families.Jaime Herrera Beutler announced today that she has introduced a legislative resolution to preserve and promote Association Health Plans, which allow small businesses to band together to offer high-quality, affordable health care to employees and their families.
The legislative resolution highlights the success and popularity of Association Health Plans, and protects the plans from being destroyed by fallout from the 2010 health care law. Relying on authority it claimed was granted by the Affordable Care Act, Washington’s Office of the Insurance Commissioner (OIC) has been canceling many Association Health Plans by applying additional bureaucratic standards to existing plans. If it were to continue on this course, hundreds of thousands of Washington residents covered by Association Health Plans would be at risk of losing their current coverage.
A recent judicial decision reversed the OIC’s actions, relieving the thousands of small businesses of at least one challenge to their current Association Health Plan coverage.
Association Health Plans have been widely used in Washington. Authorized by the legislature in 1995, they have provided coverage to more than 500,000 employers, employees and their families across the state.
“I believe we can and must address our nation’s health care crisis with better reforms, and part of that should be the expanded use of Association Health Plans. The last thing we should be doing is squeezing Association Health Plans out of existence,” said Jaime. “These plans allow small business to band together and offer the type of robust care larger corporations and unions can offer employees. They’re an excellent option for small businesses to offer cost-effective, quality health care to individuals, which is why hundreds of thousands of Washington residents use them.”
“We’d like to thank Congresswoman Herrera Beutler for her resolution that recognizes and protects qualified Association Health Plans. Qualified Association Health Plans are a tremendous success story in Washington state,” said Art Castle, Executive Vice President of the Building Industry Association of Washington. “This resolution helps associations to continue to provide competitively priced, quality health insurance for our thousands small business members, employees, and their families.”