A 4389  S 2676 

Requires certain entities authorized to issue health benefits plans to pay annual assessment

A 4389 (McKeon)  S 2676 (Vitale) NJEA, a member of NJ For Health Care coalition, supports A4389 with amendments to be considered by the committee. NJEA supports expanded healthcare for all New Jerseyans. Not only is health care a basic human right all citizens deserve, student health is important to learning, and without insurance, parents often do not seek preventative health care.

Replacing the expiring federal health insurance assessment with a state assessment creates opportunities for us to expand affordability and coverage options on our newly created state health exchange. It will help move us closer to our shared goal of ensuring all New Jerseyans have access to health care.

That goal has never been more important than in the midst of this pandemic. Persistent racial and economic gaps have made accessing health care difficult for hundreds of thousands of our New Jersey neighbors during the COVID crisis. Closing these gaps must be a priority when considering how the HIA funds are used.

The amended bill requires the health insurance assessment funds support programs to increase affordability, reduce racial disparities and decrease the number of uninsured, particularly for low and moderate income New Jerseyans who make up the majority of our uninsured.

NJEA supports that goal and the ongoing effort of the coalition to expand coverage for all children in our state. For these reasons, we join with our NJ For Health Care coalition partners in support of A4389.

We urge the Committee to vote “yes” on A4389 and to do all you can to support the goal of ensuring all New Jerseyans have access to quality, affordable health care.

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