News

Statement from Essential Health Benefits Coalition on Final HHS Rule

For immediate release: March 15, 2013

Contact: Eric Lail, 202-626-8625 or eric.lail@bcbsa.com

The Essential Health Benefits Coalition appreciates that the Department of Health and Human Services issued the final Essential Health Benefits Rule on February 20th. While the EHB final rule took some important steps to address affordability by permitting state flexibility and flexibility in cost sharing requirements, we remain concerned that the final overall EHB provisions will place upward pressure on premiums. Higher premiums will reduce access to coverage for small businesses and individuals.

The EHBC firmly believes that the standards related to essential health benefits have significant implications for the affordability of the Affordable Care Act’s principal goal – increasing the number of Americans with health coverage. We hope to continue to work with policy makers on long term strategies for future EHB rule making that promotes the availability of affordable coverage options.

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The Essential Health Benefits Coalition is a broad-based organization representing large and small employers from various sectors of the U.S. economy, pharmacy benefit managers, health plans and health care providers who are committed to the adoption of an essential health benefits package that is affordable and flexible in order to better enable employers and individuals to obtain and maintain health care coverage.