The history of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has been full of twist in turns that have made the longevity and stability of the Marketplace questionable. The most recent challenge to the ACA circled around the constitutionality of the law’s individual mandate provision with Texas leading the charge.
Supporters of the ACA rejoiced when the Supreme Court struck down this latest challenge in June of this year and demand the legislation constitutional. While this is likely not the end to the long history of back and forth regarding the legality of the ACA, this decision reflects a larger trend of stability and growth in the Marketplace that has been missing during the Trump Administration.
Members are expected to flock to the Marketplace and can capitalize on the increased savings available because of this decision and other pieces of legislation recently made in the support of the ACA.
Brief History of The ACA in Recent Years and the Changing Environment
Even in more recent years, former President Trump’s administration challenged the ACA’s validity. Congressional Republicans led the charge and spent nearly a year looking to find ways to repeal the ACA altogether. And despite Trump’s initiatives to replace the ACA with an alternative healthcare system, the oval office occupancy changed hands again; President Biden reinvigorated the Obama-created ecosystem with a series of executive orders and additional funding. The ACA is here to stay. And this latest Supreme Court ruling only solidifies its existence.
With a decision looming in the balance prior to June 17, President Biden’s administration charged ahead with plans to stabilize and expand the ACA. In the wake of the pandemic, President Biden sought to expand the premium tax credits, eligibility requirements, and expand enrollment timelines. Now that the latest Supreme Court ruling is in effect, these ACA improvements will likely continue, with the most recent Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters (NBPP) Part III proposing key changes such as expanding the annual open enrollment period and establishing monthly special enrollment periods (SEP) for low-income individuals. The Supreme Court’s ruling added needed legitimacy to the ACA that will provide a smoother transition for all the legislation being proposed by the Biden Administration.
Now that the Supreme Court closed the case on this latest round of challenges, many believe these proposed improvements and temporary concessions will remain. The details may change regarding enrollment periods, age, and income requirements. But the ACA itself has a clear path to continued growth and stability.
Overview of the Members Affected by Stabilization to the ACA
The platform provides access to those qualified individuals who do not have insurance and who have pre-existing conditions. Particularly, the ACA provides coverage and potential savings for populations who historically have lacked access to health insurance. The ACA extends coverage solutions to eligible young adults, especially those who are aging out of their parent’s insurance plans. Early retirees can also benefit from the ACA. Additionally, those who aren’t provided with an affordable insurance option by an employer can find a variety of coverage options on the Marketplace.
With the ACA once again proving that it is constitutional, those who have put off enrolling in health insurance due to fears that the rug can be swept out from under them, can feel safe in enrolling through the Marketplace. Considering just how many Americans rely on the Marketplace right now, which is 31 million according to the latest analytics from the Department of Health and Human Services, dismantling the ACA would be catastrophic.
Enrolling in an ICHRA Helps Members Make the Most of a Growing ACA Marketplace
The Supreme Court ruling coupled with recent efforts made by the Biden Administration, have made Individual Coverage Health Reimbursement Arrangements (ICHRAs) an even better option for employees tired of unaffordable and underwhelming group insurance options. An ICHRA is all about reimbursement members for the health insurance that they select, this includes premiums paid for plans on the ACA Marketplace. Now, the incentives to gain the Marketplace are even more robust.
Increased premium tax credit subsidies that offset the costs of individual monthly premiums, longer enrollment periods, and more members flocking to the Marketplace, all work to drive even larger amounts of new and returning enrollees. The recent ruling is just icing on the cake for many.
The recent surge in energy and support for the ACA is only making the ICHRA model more attractive to both employers and individuals alike. If you’re ready to explore your ICHRA options or enroll in a Marketplace plan, contact W3LL! We can help you from find the right plan for both your health and your wallet.