Democratic Congresswoman Kim Schrier is one of three members of Congress to have introduced a bill that will reduce co-payments and health deductibles for consumers.
Schrier represents the eighth congressional district of Washington State which encompasses the counties of Chelan and Kittitas.
Schrier and congresswoman Terri Sewell of Alabama are co-sponsors of the Consumer Cost Cap Act and co-chairs of the NDP Coalition’s Health Care Task Force. The third co-sponsor of the bill is Congresswoman Kathy Manning from North Carolina.
âAs a doctor, I know people often delay seeing a doctor for a small problem because of the cost, whether it’s a high deductible before coverage applies or an expensive quota for a visit to the office. But then this little problem can become much more serious and costly, âsaid representative Schrier. “The Consumer Cost Cap Act will lower the cost of care for millions of Americans to ensure they can access the care they need, when they need it.”
The bill would reduce costs for those on federal market plans by increasing the value of cost-sharing reduction assistance and expanding eligibility. The purpose of the bill is to encourage more Americans to purchase health insurance to receive the necessary care. The proposed legislation would build on the success of provisions adopted in the US bailout which caps premiums at no more than 8.5% of family income.
Schrier says the cost-cutting benefits imposed by the bill would translate into an average 8th Arrondissement family saving about $ 2,500 in out-of-pocket expenses – seeing their deductible drop by more than 80% to less than $ 500.
âIncreasing and expanding the federal grants available through Washington Healthplanfinder would help tens of thousands of Washingtonians to be covered, stay covered and use their coverage more effectively,â said Michael Marchand, marketing director for Washington Health Benefit Exchange. âCustomers report skipping necessary appointments and stretching medications due to cost issues. This bill responds directly to these concerns.
US Senator Jeanne Shaheen led this effort in the Senate.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated how important access to quality health care is to saving lives,” said Senator Shaheen. âCongress must do everything possible to reduce health care costs for families, which is why I am proud to lead the effort in the Senate to reduce deductibles, copayments and premium costs. I am encouraged that the provisions of my bill have been included in President Biden’s US bailout on a temporary basis, but these changes must be permanent and we must also expand cost-sharing assistance for help reduce out-of-pocket expenses for American families. Millions of low and middle income families are breaking the bank to pay for the care they need – this bill is a critical step in strengthening our health care system and ensuring that no family falls between the cracks of the net. I appreciate the partnership of Rep. Schrier in our efforts to reduce deductibles and out of pocket expenses at this time when people need help the most.