Executive Order Revives Standardized ACA Exchange Plans

In President Joe Biden’s new executive order aimed at promoting competition in the American economy, he directs HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra to “implement standardized options in the national Health Insurance Marketplace” in a bid to “ensure that Americans can choose health insurance plans that meet their needs and compare plan offerings.”

Standardized plans on the federally run health insurance exchange, HealthCare.gov, are not a new concept: They were initially introduced during the Obama administration before being rolled back by the Trump administration. And several states that run their own exchanges currently have some form of standardized plans. But industry experts tell AIS Health that a move to standardize plans at the federal level will only work this time around if it’s done with several key principles in mind.

“Advocates of standardized plans will highlight goals of making plans simpler to use and putting key [health care services] before deductibles, things like that,” says Myra Simon, a principal at Avalere Health. “How standardized plans are implemented is going to affect to whether they contribute to those goals or not.”

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Leslie Small

Leslie Small

Leslie has been reporting and editing in various journalism roles for nearly a decade. Most recently, she was the senior editor of FierceHealthPayer, an e-newsletter covering the health insurance industry. A graduate of Penn State University, she previously served in editing roles at newspapers in Pennsylvania, Virginia and Colorado.

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