Statement: Senator Hernandez on Trump’s Short-Term Plans Announcement

August 1, 2018

SACRAMENTO – Senator Ed Hernandez (D-West Covina) issued the following statement in reaction to the Trump Administration’s Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services today issuing final regulations to extend "short-term" plans from three months to up to three years:

“These regulations are worse than anticipated. Allowing “short-term” plans for up to three years is clearly an attempt by the Trump Administration to sabotage the ACA.  These policies are misleading and confusing to the public. These junk insurance policies barely cover any services and give people a false sense of security. They don’t end up covering necessary treatment, using pre-existing condition exclusions and health questionnaires to deny coverage. Trump’s team continues to do everything possible to destabilize our insurance market and compromise the health care of millions of Californians, but I won’t let that happen,” said Senator Hernandez, author of Senate Bill 910. “This is why the California State Legislature must pass my measure SB 910, which would keep this junk insurance out of California. We can’t go back to the days before the ACA when you could be denied care completely or go into financial ruin because of this care.”

SB 910 was originally introduced in response to the Trump Administration’s proposed regulations in February to expand short term limited duration coverage to less than 12 months. These short-term plans do not have to cover essential health benefits, like cancer treatment, substance use treatment, or maternity care. Additionally, these plans can deny coverage altogether for those with pre-existing conditions. An issue brief released by the Urban Institute in February 2018 indicates that average individual market premiums would increase approximately 18% in 2019 in the states that do not prohibit or limit these plans.