New private health policies will be required to cover evidence-based preventive services and eliminate cost-sharing requirements for such services, under regulations issued by several federal agencies.
New preventive-care regulations issued
“Today, too many Americans do not get the high-quality preventive care they need to stay healthy, avoid or delay the onset of disease, lead productive lives, and reduce healthcare costs,” said HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius in a written statement. “From the Recovery Act to the first lady's ‘Let's Move Campaign' to the Affordable Care Act, the administration is laying the foundation to help transform the health care system from a system that focuses on treating the sick to a system that focuses on keeping every American healthy.”
The regulations, issued by HHS and the Labor and Treasury departments, require new health insurance policies beginning on or after Sept. 23 to cover preventive services “that have strong scientific evidence of their health benefits.”
Preventive services such as breast and colon cancer screenings, screening for vitamin deficiencies during pregnancy, screenings for diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure, and tobacco-cessation counseling will be covered under these rules, according to HHS, as well as routine vaccines and certain preventive services for women and children.
Under these regulations, plans will not be able to charge a patient a copayment, coinsurance or deductible for these services when they are delivered by a network provider, HHS stated.
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