Murphy Takes Action to Protect the Affordable Care Act

Gov. Phil Murphy signed a package of bills to safeguard the provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in New Jersey. The bills, which will codify into state law the basic protections for healthcare consumers that are part of the Affordable Care Act, include protections for no-cost preventative care and contraception, prohibit exclusions for pre-existing conditions, allow children to stay on their parents’ plan until age 26, and incorporate mental health and maternity care as part of essential benefits, among others. The Governor highlighted the importance of these bills during an armchair discussion with Hackensack Meridian Health Chief Executive Officer Bob Garret.

“At a time when the Affordable Care Act is under siege by the Trump Administration and being challenged in the courts, New Jersey has a responsibility to protect and provide access to high-quality, affordable health care for all of our residents,” said Governor Murphy. “I applaud my colleagues in the Legislature for taking the critical steps necessary to ensure that the provisions of the Affordable Health Care Act are codified into state law and for working to make the health of our residents a top priority.”

The Governor signed the following bills into law:

A5500 (Greenwald, Lopez, Lampitt/Pou, Lagana) – Expands rate review process in DOBI for certain individual and small employer health benefits plans.

A5501 (McKeon, Vainieri Huttle, Speight/Pou, Weinberg) – Requires continuation of health benefits dependent coverage until child turns 26 years of age.

A5503 (Reynolds-Jackson, Swain/Vitale, Cryan) – Establishes open enrollment period under Individual Health Coverage Program.

A5504 (Benson, Schaer/Cryan, Diegnan) – Applies 85% loss ratio requirement to certain large group health benefits carriers.

A5506 (Tully, Danielsen/Singleton, Diegnan) – Repeals statute authorizing offering of “Basic and Essential” health benefits plans under individual health benefits plans and other statutes concerning basic health plans; makes conforming amendments.

A5507 (McKeon, Conaway, Mukherji/Pou, Ruiz) – Requires health benefits coverage for certain preventive services.

A5508 (Zwicker, Murphy, Sumter/Ruiz, Pou) – Revises law requiring health benefits coverage for certain contraceptives.

A5248 (Conaway, Mukherji, McKeon/Gill, Singleton) – Preserves certain requirements that health insurance plans cover essential health benefits.

S626 (Vitale, Diegnan/Vainieri Huttle, Chiaravalloti, Downey, Danielsen) – Clarifies prohibition on preexisting condition exclusions in health insurance policies.

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