Congressman Riggleman Introduces Bill to Protect Patients with Pre-Existing Conditions

August 2, 2019
Press Release
WASHINGTON- Congressman Denver Riggleman (VA-05) introduced a bill to ensure continued protections for patients with pre-existing conditions on Friday morning.  The Protecting Patients with Preexisting Conditions Act (H.R.4159)will amend the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) to guarantee coverage for individuals with pre-existing conditions even if the Affordable Care Act is struck down in court.  

“I am proud to introduce this bill which guarantees health coverage for individuals with preexisting conditions,” said Congressman Riggleman.  “I campaigned on reforming our healthcare system in a way that lowers costs while ensuring coverage for people with preexisting conditions.  This bill goes a long way towards that goal.”

Original co-sponsors include Congresswoman Jaime Herrera Beutler (WA-03), Congressman Bill Huizenga (MI-02), Congressman Dan Newhouse (WA-04), and Congresswoman Ann Wagner (MO-02).

Rep. Huizenga: “No matter what happens to Obamacare in the court system, I believe no one should be denied coverage based on a pre-existing condition. This common-sense legislation ensures people with pre-existing conditions can get coverage and maintains important safeguards to prevent costs for individuals with a pre-existing condition from skyrocketing.”

Rep. Newhouse: “As we work to increase access and lower the cost of healthcare, protections for patients with pre-existing conditions continues to be a priority. I agree with the people of Central Washington who believe we must continue to protect our most vulnerable populations, and I am proud to join my Republican colleagues to ensure patients are guaranteed coverage and not subjected to higher pricing, regardless of their health conditions.”

Rep. Wagner: “As Chairwoman of the Suburban Caucus, I hear from constituents every day about how important it is to protect people who have preexisting conditions. All Americans deserve and depend on access to quality and affordable healthcare. I am proud to join my colleague Congressman Riggleman in introducing the Maintaining Protections for Patients with Preexisting Conditions Act, legislation that guarantees coverage for individuals with preexisting conditions. I have always supported coverage for those with preexisting conditions and have worked tirelessly with my colleagues to craft legislation that provides these basic protections.  We will continue to fight for affordable care and protections for vulnerable populations.”

The Protecting Patients with Pre-Existing Conditions Act is a response to cases in federal courts that threaten to repeal the entire Affordable Care Act — including its coverage of pre-existing conditions.

More specifically, the legislation amends the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) by adding provisions from the ACA in order that they remain law even if the ACA is struck down. The pre-existing conditions provisions include:

-Guaranteed issue and renewability
-A prohibition on pre-existing condition benefit exclusions
-A ban on health status underwriting
-Inclusion of community rating

Congressman Denver Riggleman was elected in 2018 to represent Virginia’s 5th Congressional District.  He serves on the House Financial Services Committee.