Rebuking Congress, Cuomo Intends to Safeguard State’s Health Coverage

In Healthcare, States, Uncategorized On

ALBANY — Striking pre-emptively at an increasingly frequent foil, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo plans to announce a series of steps on Monday to safeguard insurance coverage against a possible repeal of all or parts of the Affordable Care Act in Washington.

The measures, taken via emergency regulations, will include requiring any private company doing business on the state’s insurance marketplace to guarantee the 10 “essential health benefits” required by President Barack Obama’s signature 2010 health care law. The governor will also direct the state’s health department to block any company that withdraws from the exchange from participating in Medicaid or its children’s health plan.

In a statement, the governor, a Democrat, said that “health care is a human right,” noting that he had also firmed plans to ensure contraceptive and abortion protections, something he initially outlined in January.

“With Washington trying to take a wrecking ball to our health care system, we are taking concrete steps to ensure core protections of the Affordable Care Act remain intact,” Mr. Cuomo said, adding that he would direct his Department of Financial Services to prevent any discrimination based on gender, age or pre-existing conditions, a politically charged topic in the health care debate. “New Yorkers will continue to have access to the quality medical care they need and deserve.”

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