Health Care Choice Act

The Health Care Choice Act is a bill that proposes allowing health insurance companies to sell health insurance across U.S. state lines.

It would allow an insurer to designate a primary state whose laws would apply to individual health insurance coverage offered by the insurer, then allow the insurer to offer that coverage in any secondary state and exempt the insurer from laws of the secondary state regulating individual health insurance coverage (e.g. state laws requiring [http://www.statehealthfacts.org/comparemaptable.jsp?ind=353&cat=7&yr=18&typ=5 guaranteed issue] , [http://www.statehealthfacts.org/comparemaptable.jsp?ind=354&cat=7&yr=18&typ=5 community rating] , [http://www.statehealthfacts.org/comparemaptable.jsp?ind=355&cat=7&yr=18&typ=5 coverage of preexisting conditions] , and [http://www.cahi.org/cahi_contents/resources/pdf/MandatesInTheStates2007.pdf benefit and provider mandates] ), and thereby allow young, healthy people to purchase less expensive individual health insurance.

Health Care Choice Act of 2005

On May 12, 2005, The Health Care Choice Act of 2005, was introduced as H.R.2355 in the U.S. House of Representatives by Rep. John Shadegg (R-AZ) and as S.1015 in the U.S. Senate by Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC).

H.R.2355 gained 71 Republican co-sponsors in the House (Rep. Ed Towns (D-NY) signed on as a co-sponsor a day before and withdrew as a co-sponsor two days after the hearing on the bill) and S.1015 gained 3 Republican co-sponsors in the Senate.

On June 28, 2005, a hearing on H.R 2335 was held by the House Subcommittee on Health of the Committee on Energy and Commerce with five invited witnesses.
Three witnesses testified in favor of H.R.2355:
* Robert Garcia de Posada, Chairman and President of The Latino Coalition and former Director of Hispanic Affairs at the Republican National Committee under Lee Atwater
* Merrill Matthews, Jr., Director of the Council for Affordable Health Insurance (CAFI) (a research and advocacy association of health insurance companies active in the individual market)
* David Gratzer, Senior Fellow at the Manhattan Institute and a Canadian psychiatry residentTwo witnesses testified against H.R.2355:
* Mike Kreidler, Washington State Insurance Commissioner on behalf of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners
* L. Hunter Limbaugh, Chair of the Advocacy Committee of the American Diabetes Association

On July 20, 2005, the House Committee on Energy and Commerce by a vote of 24 to 23 (24 Republicans in favor, 21 Democrats and 2 Republicans opposed) ordered H.R.2355 reported favorably out of committee, which it was on February 16, 2006, and subsequently died with no further action in the full House. S.1015 died in committee.

Health Care Choice Act of 2007

On December 12, 2007, The Health Care Choice Act of 2007, was introduced as H.R.4460 in the U.S. House of Representatives by Rep. John Shadegg (R-AZ), and as of January 17, 2008, had 43 Republican co-sponsors.

References

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** cite web |author=Subcommittee on Health of the Committee on Energy and Commerce |month=June 28, |year=2005 |title=Hearing on H.R.2355 |url=http://energycommerce.house.gov/reparchives/108/Hearings/06282005hearing1564/hearing.htm
** cite web |author=Subcommittee on Health of the Committee on Energy and Commerce |month=June 28, |year=2005 |title=Hearing on H.R.2355 transcript |url=http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=109_house_hearings&docid=f:22986.pdf
** cite web |author=Subcommittee on Health of the Committee on Energy and Commerce |month=June 28, |year=2005 |title=Hearing on H.R.2355 webcast |url=http://energycommerce.house.gov/108/ram/06282005_health.ram (2:07:30)
** cite web |author=Committee on Energy and Commerce |month=February 16, |year=2006 |title=Report on H.R.2355 |url=http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=109_cong_reports&docid=f:hr378.109.pdf
*
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