Build Back Better Act: Health Coverage Provisions Explained

On November 19, 2021, the House of Representatives passed the Build Back Better Act, the budget reconciliation bill, with the Senate expected to consider the legislation in coming weeks. The Build Back Better Act includes numerous provisions that would dramatically strengthen and expand both public and private health insurance coverage. Some of the new provisions would build on actions Congress previously took in the American Rescue Plan Act, enacted earlier this year.1

Among its Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) provisions, the Build Back Better Act would permanently require states to provide 12 months of postpartum health coverage and 12 months of continuous coverage for children, make federal funding for CHIP permanent, and provide a permanent, significant increase in federal Medicaid funding for Puerto Rico and the other territories. Among its private insurance provisions, the Build Back Better plan would temporarily extend marketplace subsidies to those in the “coverage gap” in the 12 states that have not yet expanded Medicaid and also extend the availability of the enhanced marketplace subsidies enacted in the American Rescue Plan Act.

This issue brief explains the Build Back Better Act’s Medicaid, CHIP, and private insurance provisions.

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  1. Edwin Park and Sabrina Corlette, “American Rescue Plan Act: Health Coverage Provisions Explained,” Georgetown University Center for Children and Families and Georgetown University Center on Health Insurance Reforms,” March 11, 2021, https://ccf.georgetown. edu/2021/03/11/american-rescue-plan-act-health-coverage-provisions-explained/.