House Passes Amended American Health Care Act

May 4, 2017

The American Health Care Act (AHCA) vote that was cancelled on March 24 was brought to vote today. It passed 217 to 213 in the House, after amendments. The bill to repeal and replace the ACA now goes to the Senate for debate. It is expected to also be a very tight Senate vote, with the timing not yet known.

Regarding employer-sponsored medical plans, the AHCA would remove the employer penalties for not offering medical coverage, delay the Cadillac tax from 2020 through 2025, return Health FSA elections to no annual cap, and significantly increase HSA contribution limits. However, provisions of the ACA that would remain the same for employer group plans include no pre-existing limitations, dependent child coverage up to age 26, and annual health insurance reporting (Forms W-2 and 1095).

Before the bill was brought for final debate in the House, GOP negotiations to secure the votes included amendments. The MacArthur amendment provides a waiver option for states to opt out of certain coverage restrictions, such as permitting higher premiums for people with pre-existing conditions. The Upton amendment provides additional federal funding toward high-risk pools for people with pre-existing conditions. Just before the AHCA vote, another bill was passed unanimously which removed from the AHCA the somewhat hidden clause that would have protected Members of Congress and their staff from the negative impact of the state waivers.

We will continue to keep you updated. In the meantime, please call your Keller account team with any questions.