The Senate GOP health reform bill announced Thursday includes a provision that would approve a small-group health plan to be sold in any state if it meets association health plan criteria. It could change the dynamic of small-group insurance by allowing SMB health plans to function like those of a large employer.

To receive approval in other states, the small group plan must be classified as an association health plan, which mandates it be organized as a permanent entity, is established for a purpose other than providing health benefits and does not condition membership on basis of minimum group size, according to text included in the Better Care Reconciliation Act by Senate Budget Chairman Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.).

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