Association health plans as proposed in legislation before Congress would create a regulatory vacuum that would allow insurance scams to flourish, threatening the coverage and financial security of millions of Americans, according to a study released by Georgetown University Health Policy Institute. The House is expected to vote next week on an administration-backed bill that would allow small businesses to band together across state lines to buy insurance through AHPs. Under the bill, sponsored by Rep. Samuel Johnson (R-Texas), AHPs would be regulated by the U.S. Labor Department and thereby be exempt from state laws. According to the study, the bill would prevent states from shutting down fraudulent insurers or from making it illegal to sell phony insurance to federal AHPs. Read a summary of the study. -- by Laura B. Benko
Study criticizes bill authorizing association health plans
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