AAN Supports Patients' Access to Quality, Affordable Health Insurance

December 21, 2012

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In December, the AAN weighed in on two proposed rules published by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) that outline health plan standards related to essential health benefits (EHB) and health insurance market reforms.

In general, the AAN supports the proposed rule on EHB because it provides critically important protections for patients who often struggle to access affordable, quality health insurance coverage today. In the letter, AAN recommends that neurodevelopmental disorders and dementias should be excluded from the umbrella of mental health and included separately as part of the EHB package, supports HHS' proposal to include coverage for habilitative services and urges HHS to ensure that the EHB package offers a robust formulary because not all patients respond to medications in the same way.

The AAN strongly supports many of the provisions proposed in the rule on health insurance market reforms. These regulations will have a significant positive impact on Americans with chronic neurological diseases by ensuring that no one is denied coverage or charged higher premiums simply because they have a pre–existing condition.

EHBs are a core package of items and services that a health plan must offer to patients in individual and small group markets in accordance with the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The proposed rule on health insurance market reforms implements key provisions of the ACA to prevent insurance companies from discriminating against people with pre–existing conditions.