“Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker, a Republican who led an impressive turnaround of not-for-profit health insurer Harvard Pilgrim, is scheduled to testify Wednesday, along with four other governors from both parties.
Rosemarie Day, founder of Day Health Strategies in Massachusetts, expects Baker to ask for changes to the 1332 waiver process that make it quicker and easier to customize a state’s approach to the individual market. She said states would like the ability to build on another state’s approved waiver with a few tweaks, rather than having to start from scratch in a 180-day process with HHS.
Past Republican proposals on waivers were seen by ACA advocates as eviscerating consumer protections, by allowing the sale of individual plans that weren’t comprehensive, thereby driving up the prices for plans that cover, for example, expensive chemotherapy drugs.
Day, who served as chief operating officer of Massachusetts’ exchange, called the ACA’s 10 essential health benefits a line in the sand for Democrats.”
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