Sen. Wilson Commends Effort to Lower Alaskans’ Health Care Costs
WASILLA – Sen. David Wilson (R-Wasilla, Mat-Su), chair of the Senate Health and Social Services Committee, today commended the Walker and Trump administrations and Alaska’s congressional delegation for working together to reduce health care costs for Alaskans.
On Tuesday, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services approved Alaska’s Innovation Waiver under Section 1332 of the Affordable Care Act, which will temporarily stabilize the state’s individual health insurance market. The 1332 waiver brings $332 million to the Alaska Reinsurance Program (ARP) over the next five years to help manage the care, costs, and claims of roughly 23,000 Alaskans in the individual market. The ARP was established by House Bill 374 in 2016, when $55 million was appropriated by the Legislature to offset spiraling health insurance costs.
“I especially applaud the work done by Lori Wing-Heier, the director of the state’s Division of Insurance, who led the effort,” Sen. Wilson said.
“Alaska has among the highest health care premiums in our nation and the 1332 waiver is expected to reduce those premiums by 20 percent by next year,” said Sen. Wilson. “This type of planning, coordination, and forward-thinking is exactly what we want to see in our state departments. As we continue to refine and improve our approach to health care on both the state and federal levels, such innovation will be key to our success.”