Press Release

Health Care Choice Act Gets First Hearing Tomorrow

Blackburn Leads Charge To Pull Down Stop Sign At State Lines

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Washington, May 24, 2011 | Claude Chafin (202-225-1112) | comments
 Rep. Marsha Blackburn's Health Care Choice Act, H.R. 371, will receive its first hearing before the Energy and Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Health tomorrow. The bill would allow Americans to purchase health care insurance across state lines. The measure is an important component in the House Republican pledge to repeal ObamaCare and replace it with patient-centered policies that actually reduce the cost of health care.

"Current law is just silly. It benefits bureaucrats but does nothing to help patients looking for affordable coverage. Today, Americans may only purchase insurance products in the state where they live. That can mean buying products loaded with mandated coverage they don't want and can't afford. For example, twelve states mandate coverage for acupuncturists. Customers in those states have only two choices, buy an expensive policy that covers acupuncture, or do without any insurance at all. It is illegal for them to find a plan in another state, one they could afford but might not cover acupuncture. It is time to pull down the stop signs at state lines."
Blackburn said ahead of the hearing.

There are 2,156 care mandates which can increase the price of insurance products from 10% to 50%. The Health Care Choice Act would allow customers to purchase insurance products from any state. While the bill frees people from expensive state mandates, it includes rigorous protections to guarantee the solvency of insurance companies. Primary state laws regarding taxes, fraud, unfair claims settlements, and other consumer protections would still apply without regard to where an insurance product originates.

Congressman Blackburn has long advocated for across-state-line purchase as a means to reduce the cost of care. Last year at the Blair House summit on health care reform, Mrs. Blackburn raised the issue with President Obama. While the President asserted that expanding the number of companies operating under a state's mandate regime would not reduce costs, Congressman Blackburn reminded him this proposal is about "letting the people out."
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