Sending Office: Honorable James B. Renacci
Currently, there exists a severe inequity in Treasury regulations in the way stand-alone vision plans (SAVPs) are treated under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Section 9010 of the ACA imposes a health insurer fee on covered entities engaged in the business
of providing health insurance. While it can be debated whether or not the fee ever made sense for a traditional health insurance company, it is clear that this fee should never have applied to SAVPs.
In recognition of the fact that these vision plans provide limited-scope health coverage, such plans are not subject to ACA market reforms and are exempt from other ACA taxes and fees. In fact, unlike other traditional health insurance subject to the fee,
SAVPs are excluded from being offered directly on the Exchanges per the ACA.
This legislation seeks to correct this inequity to which SAVPs are subjected. Vision plans, especially those which are smaller or not-for-profit, are crippled by this unduly fee that also ultimately foists upon the consumer either higher prices or a less
robust or limited eye care benefit. SAVPs across the country serve over 88 million people, with over 4 million people covered in my state of Ohio alone. Access to vision care is not only necessary for those with poor or deteriorating eyesight, but
the routine eye exams that SAVPs cover are often critical in revealing other conditions such as diabetic retinopathy – a precursor to diabetes, hypertension, inflammatory conditions, tumors, and undiagnosed strokes.
Please join me in this bipartisan effort to bring immediate relief to our consumers and the industries that provide a valuable service such as vision care. For more information or to cosponsor the Protecting Consumer Access to Vision Care Act of 2017, please
contact Mark Galay at Mark.Galay@mail.house.gov in my office.
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