Alert / Employee Benefits
The Senate Takes the Repeal-and-Replace Baton

There is little more to report today, beyond what we described yesterday in our Alert on the US House of Representatives' passage of the GOP's American Health Care Act (AHCA).

The Senate is working on its own bill to partially repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The Senate's effort is expected to provide larger tax credits than the AHCA for the purchase of individual health insurance policies by low-income individuals. The Senate bill will also likely provide for increased payments to rural hospitals, which have suffered in the wake of the ACA due to reduced payments they're receiving under that law, and may moderate some of the more controversial elements of the AHCA designed to stabilize the individual health insurance market.

There's no timeline for the Senate effort. It would be next to impossible for the Senate to act before Memorial Day. Even if the Senate is able to agree on a bill, it's unclear whether the Freedom Caucus, the staunch House conservatives who initially derailed the AHCA in that chamber, would support the Senate version. So, while group plan sponsors might keep one eye on Washington, it's important to keep the other focused on ACA compliance, as it remains the law of the land.

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