Health Affairs  |  April 7, 2023

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On March 30, 2023, Judge Reed O’Connor, a federal judge in the Northern District of Texas, ruled that the federal government may not require commercial health plans across the U.S. to cover a wide range of preventive health services without imposing cost-sharing under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The ACA requires insurers and group health plans to cover more than 100 preventive health services—without cost to consumers. This requirement—which includes cancer screenings, immunizations, and many other services—is one of the ACA’s most widely-recognized, and popular, benefits. Around 151 million people received free preventive care in 2020 alone; this led to increased use of preventive services, improved health outcomes, and reduced racial disparities in access to care.

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