Bill Before State Legislature Would Harm North Carolinians with Pre-Existing Conditions, Moms Leader Warns, Urging Lawmakers to Instead Expand Medicaid
“The proposed committee substitute to House Bill 933, now being considered by the North Carolina state legislature, would jeopardize health insurance for people in the state with pre-existing conditions and for mothers, especially those living in rural communities, by making it harder for them to find affordable plans that cover pregnancy and maternity care, prescription drugs, and other essential services.
“Especially at this time when the Trump administration has done so much to sabotage the Affordable Care Act and inject instability into the health insurance marketplace, lawmakers should be looking for ways to keep health coverage affordable. But this bill would do the opposite. The new health insurance plans it allows would attract younger, healthier buyers, leaving older, sicker patients with only prohibitively expensive options or, in some cases, no health coverage options at all
“The new plans this bill would allow would not be subject to state and federal regulation. Therefore, they could exclude coverage for behavioral health problems, substance abuse disorders, and maternity care. Insurance companies could price them out of reach or deny coverage altogether for people with pre-existing conditions, who would be left with no option but to join high-risk pools that offer inadequate, exorbitant coverage most cannot afford. Tennessee has adopted a similar measure and its risk score is now the second worst in the nation.
“For the sake of families in the state, we strongly urge North Carolina legislators to consider the impact of this bill and instead expand Medicaid – a solution that will be much more beneficial for mothers, families and everyone in the state.”