Gov. Phil Murphy has approved a comprehensive legislative health care package.

During a stop at Hackensack Meridian Health JFK Medical Center in Edison on Thursday, Murphy announced he signed nine bills, “which essentially codify the important elements of the Affordable Care Act into New Jersey state law.”

“These are big deal game-changers so that we won’t wake up one day and find out something like pre-existing conditions all of a sudden is a different reality, or that right now Johnny and Sally can stay on their mom’s insurance program till they’re 26, that they don’t wake up some day and that reality has gone away."

Murphy said these new laws will also protect other valuable coverage like emergency care, maternity and "unfettered access to contraception.”

Murphy said the Trump administration continues to try to dismantle the Affordable Care Act without any plan to replace it and it’s important for New Jersey to now make sure this healthcare coverage continues because “we’re too exposed if we’re relying on an unsettled if not hostile reality in Washington. We have to protect ourselves.”

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Murphy said health care should be "a right, not a privilege, for everybody.”

The list of bills signed into law:

  • A5500 — Expands rate review process in DOBI for certain individual and small employer health benefits plans.
  • A5501 — Requires continuation of health benefits dependent coverage until child turns 26 years of age.
  • A5503 — Establishes open enrollment period under Individual Health Coverage Program.
  • A5504 — Applies 85% loss ratio requirement to certain large group health benefits carriers.
  • A5506 — Repeals statute authorizing offering of "Basic and Essential” health benefits plans under individual health benefits plans and other statutes concerning basic health plans; makes conforming amendments.
  • A5507 — Requires health benefits coverage for certain preventive services.
  • A5508 — Revises law requiring health benefits coverage for certain contraceptives.
  • A5248 — Preserves certain requirements that health insurance plans cover essential health benefits.
  • S626 — Clarifies prohibition on preexisting condition exclusions in health insurance policies.

Also on New Jersey 101.5:

You can contact reporter David Matthau at David.Matthau@townsquaremedia.com

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