June 26, 2015
a 6-3 decision, the Supreme Court ruled that the Affordable Care Act
(ACA) can continue to provide subsidies for health insurance to
qualifying individuals. The decision upheld a centerpiece of the ACA and
national health care reform.
The issue before the Court was
whether individuals purchasing health care insurance through federally
run exchange systems, rather than state run exchanges, are eligible to
receive subsidies. Thirty-four states currently rely on the federal
marketplace for health insurance plans.
TRICARE beneficiaries are
unaffected by the decision. At the urging of MOAA and other military
and veterans organizations, Congress passed the TRICARE Affirmation Act
in April 2010, providing a statutory regulation saying that TRICARE
satisfies the minimum essential coverage requirements of the ACA.
Congress passed subsequent legislation a month later to exempt VA and
CHAMPVA beneficiaries from the coverage requirements. These plans are
also excluded from so-called "Cadillac taxes" on high-value plans.
Importantly, the ACA will not affect TRICARE or the VA's health administration, eligibility, or cost to beneficiaries.
focus remains on safeguarding military and VA beneficiaries' health
care benefits, protecting against taxation of those benefits, improving
access to providers, and ensuring long-term sustainability of Medicare
and TRICARE. Our mission is to make sure government leaders in both the
executive and legislative branches understand the important distinction
between social insurance programs like Medicare and Social Security and
earned compensation for a career of military service and sacrifice.
MOAA will continue to track the ACA and ensure that military and VA beneficiaries are not negatively impacted.