Press Release

U.S. Rep. Castor, Democratic Florida Delegation Urge Gov. Scott to Take Action to Lower Health Care Premiums

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Washington, May 17, 2018 | comments
Today, U.S. Reps. Kathy Castor (FL14), Ted Deutch (FL22) and U.S. Sen. Nelson and the entire Democratic Florida Delegation urged Gov. Rick Scott to take action to prevent higher health premiums and costs on Florida families as the devastating and repeated assault on health care by President Trump and Congressional Republicans adds up.
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Today, U.S. Reps. Kathy Castor (FL14), Ted Deutch (FL22) and U.S. Sen. Nelson and the entire Democratic Florida Delegation urged Gov. Rick Scott to take action to prevent higher health premiums and costs on Florida families as the devastating and repeated assault on health care by President Trump and Congressional Republicans adds up.

Health policy experts confirm that the sabotage and instability will drive up insurance premiums, but the Delegation outlines steps Gov. Scott can take with them to protect Floridians from higher costs.  The members warn, “[o]ur neighbors could see premiums increase by 16.9 percent and over 600,000 Floridians could be uninsured or underinsured all due to the sabotage.”

Last year Florida led the nation by far in the number of sign-ups in the federal Marketplace – more than 1.7 million.  Indeed, since 2014 Florida has led the nation every year in enrollment.  In addition, nine out of 10 Floridians received financial help to reduce their monthly premiums.  To expand access and reduce costs for Floridians, U.S. Rep. Castor and her colleagues highlight six actions Gov. Scott can take:

· Protect state residents by limiting the sale of sub-par junk insurance plans.

· Boost coverage (and lower costs) by increasing outreach, enrollment and marketing.

· Strengthen state oversight of the individual market to improve plan participation and lower costs.

· Protect consumers by ensuring their health plan provides essential health benefits, like hospital care or prescription drugs.

· Use existing Affordable Care Act (ACA) authority to craft a reinsurance program to reduce health insurance premiums.

· Broaden the insurance risk pool by passing a state-level policy to encourage broad participation – especially younger and healthy Floridians – that drives down the cost of insurance for all Floridians.

The members close their letter with the following message for Gov. Scott:

“Republicans in Washington have proven to be incapable of crafting a replacement for the ACA that would increase coverage and lower costs for Florida families and they remain unwilling to seriously engage in bipartisan improvements to the ACA.  For the sake of our constituents, we urge you to take action to mitigate the impact of their harmful actions and inability to solve the problems that exist in our insurance markets today.  We stand ready to work with you and thank you for your consideration.”

U.S. Rep. Castor serves as Vice Ranking Member of the U.S. House Energy & Commerce Committee, and helped to draft the Affordable Care Act to ensure it works for families and businesses.  Last year, she stood up for Florida families at every attempt to cut access to affordable and quality health care coverage, and met with numerous groups, families, doctors, neighbors and small businesses who stood with her in protecting affordable and quality health care coverage.

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