The change is intended to make insurance more affordable and expand consumer choice. Premiums for Affordable Care Act health plans have increased in recent years, straining the budgets of many middle-class people who don’t qualify for the law’s subsidies.
But critics say the new policy could undermine the ACA by driving costs up for people who want more comprehensive coverage. President Donald Trump has been a vociferous opponent of President Barack Obama’s signature legislative achievement.
“For far too long, states have looked to Washington with a ‘Mother, may I?’ approach,” said Seema Verma, the administrator for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. “Today we are saying the states have the power to make the individual markets work through innovative policies that best meet the needs of your citizens.”
She unveiled the plan at the American Legislative Exchange Council, a group that promotes conservative policies at the state level.