Why Joe Biden must keep Donald Trump’s short-term health plans in place

President-elect Joe Biden has promised “a dramatic expansion of health care coverage and bold steps to lower health care costs” once he takes office after his inauguration Jan. 20. But one of his first orders of business may undermine both those goals in one fell swoop.

The incoming administration has signaled its intention to roll back President Donald Trump’s expansion of short-term health plans. These plans have been a rare source of low-cost coverage for millions of Americans unable to find affordable insurance on Obamacare’s exchanges.

Short-term plans are less expensive because they’re not subject to Obamacare’s cost-inflating mandates and regulations. They don’t have to provide coverage for Obamacare’s 1 essential health benefits. They can also vary premiums according to a person’s health status and history.

As a result, they’re about 80% cheaper than exchange plans, according to an industry study. In 2016, the final year of the Obama administration, the average monthly premium for an individual short-term plan was $110, compared to $363 on the Obamacare-compliant individual market.

Nothing contained in this blog is to be construed as necessarily reflecting the views of the Pacific Research Institute or as an attempt to thwart or aid the passage of any legislation.

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