Is Free High-Quality Health Care being received by the U.S Congressional Members?
The U.S Congress members were receiving the same healthcare insurance advantages as other U.S federal employee from the FEHBP (Federal Employees Health Benefits Program), before the approval of Patient Protection & Affordable Care Act (ACA or Obamacare). The lawmakers added a provision (Section 1312, (d)(3)(D)) during the preparation of the ACA bill. It requires members of the U.S Congress and appointed congressional staff members to get hold of their health insurance from ACA exchanges instead of continuously receiving their healthcare coverage from FEHBP. On 1st January 2014, the Congressional staff members and MOC (Members of Congress) purchased their insurance through the Small business Health Options Program (SHOP) exchange of Columbia District also called DC Health Link.
Point to be noted that Congressional staff members and MOC paid at least 28 percent of their annual healthcare premiums by pre-tax payroll deductions. It is similar to those federal employees who purchased their insurance from the FEHBP. The U.S federal government is offering a subsidy estimated 72 percent to entire FEHBP premiums. The District Columbia’s SHOP has offered a total of 57 various ACA insurance plans with different levels including bronze, silver, gold and Platinum. The Personnel Management Office has mentioned that MOC & other Congressional staff might receive just employer contribution after purchasing insurance at the gold level. The Members of Congress are receiving benefits by the SHOP health plans of District Columbia and federal employer contributions is similar to those received by employees of a large company.