New Health Reform Bill Includes Provisions that Impact People with CF
March 22, 2010
The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation has followed the health care reform discussion closely. While the Foundation has not taken a position on any particular health reform bill, we have consistently and aggressively encouraged officials to include specific reforms that are important for the treatment of cystic fibrosis.
The bill passed by Congress on March 21 includes provisions that are considered beneficial to people with cystic fibrosis. These include:
- Pre-existing conditions: People with pre-existing conditions will find it easier to get health care coverage and have more protection against losing coverage.
- Annual and lifetime spending caps: Insurers may no longer establish annual and lifetime coverage limits on their health care plans.
- Expanded Medicaid coverage: Medicaid will be available to more people, including some adults without children.
- Out-of-pocket expenses: The bill will establish limits on consumers’ out-of-pocket health care expenses, including reducing deductibles, co-payments and co-insurance.
- Coverage for dependents: Children will now be able to remain on their parents’ or guardians’ insurance plans up until age 26.
- Employer-provided health plans: Employers will receive assistance to help make insurance coverage for their employees more affordable.
The bill that passed the House was previously passed by the Senate in December and now goes on to President Obama for his signature. A second bill, called the Reconciliation Act, was also passed. This bill supplements the first bill on some key issues and is expected to be taken up by the Senate shortly.
The Foundation is the leader in promoting quality of care for people with cystic fibrosis. The new health reform bill initiates several programs aimed to enhance quality of care. As these provisions are implemented, the Foundation will continue to educate elected officials about the unique needs of people with CF and work to ensure that high quality care for CF continues.