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From our Expert Voices conversation on plans for health care reform after Trump's executive order:

One under-reported part of the order is its direction "to increase the usability of Health Reimbursement Arrangements (HRAs), to expand employers' ability to offer HRAs to their employees, and to allow HRAs to be used in conjunction with nongroup coverage."

Prior to the ACA, HRAs were used by some employers who wanted to reimburse their employees' health care premium expenses rather than offer their own plans. However, in 2013 the Obama administration decided that standalone HRAs violated the ACA. Loosening or reversing those restrictions on using tax-preferred HRAs could fundamentally transform how employers provide health care benefits.

In a recent Mercer survey, 16% of employers said they would consider a standalone HRA for all eligible employees if there were no penalty, and 21% said they might consider it depending on the strength of the individual market. Notably, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) specifically prohibits employers from gaming the system by dumping less healthy employees onto the individual markets.

The bottom line: If done right, an HRA expansion could strengthen the individual market by adding healthy customers and expanding the risk pools, an outcome that should be cheered by Democrats and Republicans alike.

Other voices in the conversation:

  • James Capretta, resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and former associate director for health programs at the OMB: Alexander-Murray deal a flawed first attempt at bipartisanship
  • John McDonough, professor at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and former Senate adviser on health reform: Obamacare is dead. Long live the Affordable Care Act.
  • Jeanne Lambrew, senior fellow at the Century Foundation and deputy assistant to the president for health policy in the Obama White House: Health care fix today could be undone tomorrow
  • Christopher Condeluci, principal at CC Law and Policy and former tax and benefits counsel to the Senate Finance Committee: Clearing the air on AHPs

Go deeper

Live list: The "Facebook Papers" arrive

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Reports based on leaked whistleblower documents from Facebook, known as the Facebook Papers, appeared in a broad range of news outlets Monday, shedding light on what company knew about harms caused on its platform and how it handled that information.

Why it matters: The reports paint a detailed picture of Facebook's efforts over the years to grapple with major problems — from hate speech to inciting violence — while continuing to pursue its business objectives.

U.S. will now allow private citizens to sponsor Afghan refugees

A family boards a bus at the airport that will take them to a refugee processing center after being evacuated from Kabul. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

Americans wanting to help vulnerable Afghan refugees now have a new way to get involved through a new U.S. private refugee sponsorship program announced Monday.

  • Groups of at least 5 adults can apply, complete background checks and start fundraising the $2,275 per refugee required.

Why it matters: It’s a big shift in the U.S refugee process, which has long relied on non-profits.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
46 mins ago - Energy & Environment

What we’re watching during the final countdown to COP26

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

This is shaping up as a critical week for climate policy in the U.S. and worldwide.

Driving the news: Democrats are in the final stages of trying to craft the big social spending and climate package they're trying to move on a thread-the-needle party-line vote.