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You are here News Health Federal judge strikes down preventative coverage requirements, setting up latest Obamacare battle

Federal judge strikes down preventative coverage requirements, setting up latest Obamacare battle

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Obama Care preventive services cutA federal judge in Texas blocked enforcement Thursday of preventative health care mandates included in the Affordable Care Act, setting up the latest legal brawl over Obamacare and threatening to reduce free access to HIV-prevention pills, screenings for cancer and other services.

U.S. District Judge Reed O'Connor ruled that preventative requirements recommended by a federal taskforce violated the law because the members of the panel had not been appointed by the president and confirmed the Senate. The requirements benefit more than 100 million Americans.

The decision will almost certainly be appealed and may eventually wind its way to the Supreme Court.

The decision Thursday was not a surprise: O'Connor ruled against the preventative mandates on the merits last fall but until now had left the practical result of his decision unresolved. O'Connor has repeatedly found violations in the Affordable Care Act, including a decision in 2018 that the law's coverage mandate was unconstitutional. That ruling was overturned by the Supreme Court in 2021.


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