Breaking: Supreme Court Upholds Affordable Care Act

June 28, 2012

Today, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of all parts of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) including the “individual mandate,” which requires that nearly all Americans have health insurance or pay a penalty.

SCOTUSblog explains the decision:

“The Affordable Care Act, including its individual mandate that virtually all Americans buy health insurance, is constitutional. There were not five votes to uphold it on the ground that Congress could use its power to regulate commerce between the states to require everyone to buy health insurance. However, five Justices agreed that the penalty that someone must pay if he refuses to buy insurance is a kind of tax that Congress can impose using its taxing power. That is all that matters. Because the mandate survives, the Court did not need to decide what other parts of the statute were constitutional, except for a provision that required states to comply with new eligibility requirements for Medicaid or risk losing their funding. On that question, the Court held that the provision is constitutional as long as states would only lose new funds if they didn’t comply with the new requirements, rather than all of their funding.”

Read the full decision here: http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/11pdf/11-393c3a2.pdf

Download the MassBio Law & Policy Committee conference call, where experts discuss implications of the decision.

MassBio will continue to work with BIO and state and federal agencies on effective implementation of the law and we will be sure to keep you informed.

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