As federal health reform legislation has stalled, health policy attention turns to the states, which have many tools to reform their health care systems. While 1115 waivers rightly get a lot of attention, because of their ability to reshape state Medicaid programs, the Affordable Care Act’s Section 1332 waivers continue to be a promising avenue for states.
Model Legislation for State Individual Mandate
[*Updated Feb. 21, 2018*] The tax bill passed in December 2017 repealed the penalty associated with the Affordable Care Act’s individual shared responsibility provision, also known as the individual mandate. The provision required those who could afford health coverage to either maintain coverage, qualify for an exemption, or make a payment with their federal income tax return. The Congressional Budget Office projects that repealing the mandate penalty will increase insurance premiums by 10 percent on average and result in 13 million more persons being uninsured. A number of states have expressed an interested in examining a state-level individual mandate, which Massachusetts has had in place since before the ACA.
Frequent State Health and Value Strategies partner Jason Levitis, health tax expert and former Counselor and ACA Implementation Lead at the U.S. Department of the Treasury, has developed model legislation for states interested in a state-level individual mandate. The model legislation that follows may be revised, so be sure to check back to the resource page to ensure you are working from the most current draft. For questions, contact Jason Levitis at email@example.com.