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Uniform Coverage Summaries for Consumers

This brief explains the proposed federal rule that requires private health plans to provide a short, easy-to-read uniform summary of benefits and coverage to all health insurance applicants and enrollees. The rule, which implements a provision in the Affordable Care Act (ACA), is intended to make it simpler for consumers to compare health plans before they enroll and understand their coverage once they are enrolled. Currently, consumers in employer-sponsored plans receive summaries of their benefits, but in many cases they’re written in complex, technical language and can be 100 pages long.

The brief details what must be included in the summary of benefits and coverage and how the information must be presented to consumers. The brief also discusses the potential costs to insurers and third-party administrators for implementing the regulation and the benefits to consumers of having more understandable, standardized information about their health coverage.

Issue Brief (.pdf)