Over 100 Health Groups Call For Better Chronic Health Care Coverage

One hundred and four health organizations sent a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius yesterday calling for increased coverage of treatment for chronic illnesses. The letter urged Sebelius to revise the Essential Health Benefits (EHB) prescription standard to cover more drugs for patients who may not respond to one form of treatment. Currently, EHB plans allow for coverage of one drug in each “theraputic category,” a level the signatories called “wholly inadequate.” Instead, the groups asked for treatments to be covered if they are recommended by medical professionals and in an “otherwise covered category,” one that is not completely excluded from coverage. The letter also called for federal intervention to ensure states participate in the exchange programs, noting that some Governors, like Florida’s Rick Scott (R), have refused to participate at all in the process of forming exchanges.

Zachary Bernstein