Washington, D.C., February 6, 2019 – A House resolution introduced today would overturn guidance from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) that permits “state innovation waivers” under section 1332 of the Affordable Care Act.

The CMS guidance gives states the option to use taxpayer dollars to promote substandard plans that do not protect patients and consumers.

The American Heart Association released the following statement in response to H.R. 986, the “Protecting Americans with Pre-Existing Conditions Act”, introduced by Representative Ann Kuster (NH):

“The CMS guidance that this resolution seeks to overturn allows states to undermine critical protections for millions of Americans living with pre-existing conditions. Under the guidance issued in 2018, ‘state innovation waivers’ could allow for the sale of cheap, inadequate health insurance plans that can deny coverage for individuals with pre-existing conditions, charge them more for being sick or retroactively rescind coverage.

“This guidance opens the door for states to deny patients important protections that the Affordable Care Act provided for people with pre-existing conditions. We urge lawmakers to support this resolution and patient protections for their constituents.”


The American Heart Association is a leading force for a world of longer, healthier lives. With nearly a century of lifesaving work, the Dallas-based association is dedicated to ensuring equitable health for all. We are a trustworthy source empowering people to improve their heart health, brain health and well-being. We collaborate with numerous organizations and millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, advocate for stronger public health policies, and share lifesaving resources and information. Connect with us on heart.org, Facebook, Twitter or by calling 1-800-AHA-USA1.

For media inquiries please contact:
Suniti Sarah Bal -- 202-787-9292; suniti.bal@heart.org

For public inquiries please contact:
800-AHA-USA1 (242-8721)
heart.org and strokeassociation.org