September 06, 2017

Warner And Kaine Statement On Trump Sabotage Of Individual Health Care Market In Virginia

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Mark Warner, a member of the Senate Finance Committee, and Tim Kaine, a member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee, released the following statement today on the uncertainty the Trump Administration has caused in the individual health insurance market, resulting in today’s announcement that Optima will reduce its insurance offerings in Virginia:

“Today we are seeing a direct result of the Trump Administration’s sabotage of the individual health care markets, which will cause pain in Virginia. President Trump has played politics with the health care system by destabilizing this market, threatening to stop necessary payments to insurance companies, and sending mixed signals about the future of the individual mandate,  all of which have led some insurers to limit or withdraw their offerings. The President must stop this immediately. Further, Congress must act quickly on short-term measures to stabilize the individual market and lower premiums, like reinsurance and the other fixes we’re debating now in the HELP and Finance Committees, while also working on longer-term solutions to strengthen the health care marketplace for the future. Virginians are counting on the President to finally put politics aside and work with bipartisan leaders in Congress to support commonsense improvements that will put the health care system back on stable ground.”

The Senate HELP Committee is holding bipartisan hearings this month on measures to stabilize the health insurance market, including proposals like Kaine’s bill to help stabilize the individual health care marketplace and lower premiums through reinsurance. State health insurance commissioners and health care experts have expressed support for reinsurance as a way to increase certainty in the marketplace.

Senator Warner sits on the Senate Finance Committee, which will hold a hearing next week on expanding consumer options and making health care coverage more affordable for American families. Senator Warner has offered several commonsense proposals to increase competition in the health care marketplace, lower health care costs, and make the Affordable Care Act work better for more Virginians.