(AP Photo/David Goldman)
The Latest: On April 30, 2022 the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services announced its suspension of Georgia’s Section 1332 Waiver. In response to this announcement, the groups issued the following statement:
“We applaud the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ decision to suspend Georgia’s unlawful 1332 waiver. Not only does it violate essential Affordable Care Act requirements, but it seeks to turn back the clock for Georgians trying to enroll in quality health care to a time when consumers were forced to navigate through private insurers, brokers, and junk plans just to get covered. Up to 100,000 Georgians stood to lose their insurance as a result of the Trump administration’s decision to approve it, and the waiver’s suspension is an important step toward achieving high-quality, affordable health care for all Georgians.”
In the waning months of the Trump administration, Trump’s Department of Health and Human Services and Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services unlawfully approved Georgia’s plan to end its residents’ access to healthcare.gov without offering an equivalent insurance marketplace. Georgia’s Section 1332 waiver request violates essential Affordable Care Act requirements and seeks to turn back the clock for Georgians trying to enroll in quality health care to a time when consumers were forced to navigate through private insurers, brokers, and junk plans just to get covered.
The Trump administration’s approval of Georgia’s unlawful 1332 waiver is just another part of its larger push to “decimate Obamacare.” Section 1332 of the ACA was designed to grant states flexibility to offer innovative coverage options, so long as the state’s plan matches or surpasses the Act’s benchmarks with respect to coverage, comprehensiveness, and affordability. But HHS substantially weakened those guardrails in 2018 with guidance that encouraged faulty state alternatives — like Georgia’s — that drive consumers to junk health plans.
Up to 100,000 Georgians stand to lose their insurance as a result of the Trump administration’s decision to approve the state’s Section 1332 waiver. Nearly 80% of Georgia residents who enroll in the individual market find and purchase their health coverage on healthcare.gov. Georgia’s Trump-approved plan will do immense damage to the state’s health insurance market, force Georgians to shop for insurance through private brokers and insurance companies, lead more residents to enroll in junk plans, and increase premiums.
Of the 1,826 total comments HHS received on the waiver, only 8 were in support of the Georgia plan.
We filed suit to vacate the Trump administration’s unlawful approval of Georgia’s Section 1332 waiver and the 2018 Trump administration decision that provided the basis for the waiver approval. Georgia’s waiver violates the statutory guardrails within the Affordable Care Act and the Trump Administration’s rushed, unreasonable decision violates the Administrative Procedure Act.
The lawsuit was filed on behalf of Planned Parenthood Southeast and the Feminist Women’s Health Center on January 14, 2021 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. Additional information is also available in a comment submitted in January, 2021. The litigation is currently stayed.
Last Updated: April 30, 2022
In the News
Atlanta Journal-Constitution / January 14, 2021
WABE / January 15, 2021
The Trump Administration weakens Section 1332 of the ACA with its 2018 Guidance.
The 2018 Guidance expressly invokes President Trump’s 2017 Executive Order instructing agencies to waive ACA’s requirements “to the maximum extent permitted by law” and weakens the statute’s critical guardrails, which are designed to protect consumers.
The State of Georgia finalizes and submits its “Georgia Access Model.”Learn More
November 1, 2020
The Administration unlawfully approves Georgia’s extraordinary Section 1332 waiver request.Learn More
January 14, 2021
We filed suit.
Case is stayed pending HHS & Treasury's review of Georgia's policy.
In early June, the Administrator of the Centers of Medicare & Medicaid Services wrote to Gov. Kemp on behalf of HHS and the Treasury Department requesting additional analysis of Georgia's plan. The Departments and Georgia have subsequently exchanged additional correspondence about the Departments’ request. This case is currently stayed until November 12, 2021 while the administration continues its review.