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NCOIL Tells Congress Don't Exempt AHPs From State Regulation

Allowing association health plans (AHPs) to be exempt from state regulation is a bad idea, according to the National Conference of Insurance Legislators (NCOIL), which...
February 25, 2003

Allowing association health plans (AHPs) to be exempt from state regulation is a bad idea, according to the National Conference of Insurance Legislators (NCOIL), which is communicating that view to Congress.  Letters saying such an exemption would undermine state health reforms, eliminate consumer protections, and threaten access to health coverage for many small employers have been sent to congressional leaders. Past legislation that would have removed AHPs from state regulation didn't get far. But this year, President Bush has come out in favor of association health plans as a way for small employers to get affordable health coverage. Under a bill introduced in Congress, the U.S. Department of Labor would regulate self-funded AHPs, but the department "has neither the funding nor the manpower needed to provide the oversight and protections states already guarantee," said NCOIL President Kathleen Keenan.