In latest blow to ACA, Trump administration extends life of short-term health insurance


U.S. President Donald Trump makes an announcement about drug prices in the Rose Garden at the White House May 11, 2018 in Washington, DC.  (Photo by Chip Somodevilla, Getty Images)

Insurers will again be able to sell short-term health insurance good for up to 12 months under final rules released Wednesday by the Trump administration.

This action overturns an Obama administration directive that limited such plans to 90 days. It also adds a new twist: If they wish, insurers can make the short-term plans renewable for up to three years.

The rule will “help increase choices for Americans faced with escalating premiums and dwindling options in the individual market, said James Parker, a senior adviser to Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar.

But the plans could also raise premiums for those who remain in the Affordable Care Act marketplace — and the short-term coverage is far more limited.

“We make no representation that it’s equivalent coverage,” Parker said.

The Trump administration’s approach is expected to please brokers and the insurers that offer the coverage.

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