House Votes to Repeal CLASS Act

The House of Representatives voted to repeal the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports (CLASS) Act, a long-term-care insurance provision of the 2010 healthcare reform law.

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Source: Modern Healthcare

"Nobody believed that it had any real merit when it was passed,” Rep. Tom Price (R-Ga.), a physician, said prior to the vote. According to Price, the CLASS program precludes the ability of patients, families and their physicians to decide what long-term care is for seniors or anyone who needs long-term services. “It inserts the federal government in a way that makes it much more difficult for choices to be realized,” Price said. “And that's wrong.”

In a 267-159 vote—including support from 28 Democrats—House members approved a bill that Rep. Charles Boustany (R-La.), a physician, introduced a year ago. Called the Fiscal Responsibility and Retirement Security Act of 2011, the bill overturns the CLASS Act, a voluntary, public-supported long-term-care insurance program. CLASS was the subject of much debate on Capitol Hill throughout 2011, and HHS suspended the program last fall. Boustany's bill serves the purpose of preventing the program from resurfacing.