Text: H.R.4386 — 116th Congress (2019-2020)All Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in House (09/18/2019)

 
[Congressional Bills 116th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]
[H.R. 4386 Introduced in House (IH)]

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116th CONGRESS
  1st Session
                                H. R. 4386

To amend title II of the Social Security Act to eliminate the Medicare 
    and disability insurance benefits waiting periods for disabled 
                              individuals.


_______________________________________________________________________


                    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

                           September 18, 2019

Mr. Doggett (for himself, Mr. Fitzpatrick, Mr. Blumenauer, Ms. Judy Chu 
of California, Mr. Cicilline, Mr. Danny K. Davis of Illinois, Ms. Dean, 
 Ms. DeLauro, Mr. Evans, Ms. Garcia of Texas, Mr. Gomez, Mr. Hastings, 
 Mr. Higgins of New York, Mr. Huffman, Mr. Larson of Connecticut, Mr. 
    Lewis, Mr. Lowenthal, Ms. Moore, Mr. Moulton, Mr. Nadler, Mrs. 
 Napolitano, Ms. Ocasio-Cortez, Mr. Pascrell, Mr. Payne, Ms. Pingree, 
 Mr. Price of North Carolina, Mr. Raskin, Ms. Sanchez, Ms. Schakowsky, 
  Mr. David Scott of Georgia, Ms. Sewell of Alabama, Mr. Suozzi, Mr. 
 Thompson of California, and Mr. Trone) introduced the following bill; 
which was referred to the Committee on Ways and Means, and in addition 
   to the Committees on Energy and Commerce, and Transportation and 
   Infrastructure, for a period to be subsequently determined by the 
  Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall 
           within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
To amend title II of the Social Security Act to eliminate the Medicare 
    and disability insurance benefits waiting periods for disabled 
                              individuals.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Stop the Wait Act''.

SEC. 2. ELIMINATION OF DISABILITY WAITING PERIOD FOR SOCIAL SECURITY 
              DISABILITY INSURANCE BENEFITS AND SURVIVING SPOUSE 
              BENEFITS.

    (a) Elimination of Waiting Period for Disability Insurance 
Benefits.--Section 223 of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 423) is 
amended--
            (1) in subsection (a)--
                    (A) in paragraph (1), in the matter following 
                subparagraph (E)--
                            (i) by striking ``disability insurance 
                        benefit (i) for each month'' and all that 
                        follows through ``, or (ii)'' and inserting 
                        ``disability insurance benefit''; and
                            (ii) by striking ``, but only if'' and all 
                        that follows through ``under such disability''; 
                        and
                    (B) in paragraph (2), by striking ``as though he 
                had attained age 62 in--'' and all that follows through 
                ``such disability insurance benefits,'' and inserting 
                ``as though the individual had attained age 62 in the 
                first month for which the individual becomes entitled 
                to such disability insurance benefits,''; and
            (2) in subsection (c), by striking paragraph (2).
    (b) Elimination of Waiting Period for Surviving Spouse and 
Surviving Divorced Spouse Benefits.--Section 202 of the Social Security 
Act (42 U.S.C. 402) is amended--
            (1) in subsection (e)--
                    (A) in paragraph (1), in the matter following 
                subparagraph (D), by striking ``beginning with--'' and 
                all that follows through ``on such basis terminated,'' 
                and inserting ``beginning with the first month in which 
                she becomes so entitled to such insurance benefits'';
                    (B) by striking paragraph (5); and
                    (C) by redesignating paragraphs (6) through (8) as 
                paragraphs (5) through (7); and
            (2) in subsection (f)--
                    (A) in paragraph (1), in the matter following 
                subparagraph (D), by striking ``beginning with--'' and 
                all that follows through ``on such basis terminated,'' 
                and inserting ``beginning with the first month in which 
                he becomes so entitled to such insurance benefits'';
                    (B) by striking paragraph (5); and
                    (C) by redesignating paragraphs (6) through (8) as 
                paragraphs (5) through (7).
    (c) Effective Date.--The amendments made by this section shall 
apply with respect to applications for disability insurance benefits, 
widow's insurance benefits, and widower's insurance benefits filed on 
or after the date of the enactment of this Act.

SEC. 3. PHASE-OUT OF WAITING PERIOD FOR MEDICARE DISABILITY BENEFITS.

    (a) In General.--Section 226(b) of the Social Security Act (42 
U.S.C. 426(b)) is amended--
            (1) in paragraph (2)(A), by striking ``, and has for 24 
        calendar months been entitled to,'' and inserting ``, and for 
        not less than the waiting period (as defined in subsection (j)) 
        has been entitled to,'';
            (2) in paragraph (2)(B), by striking ``and has been for not 
        less than 24 months,'' and inserting ``and for not less than 
        the waiting period (as defined in subsection (j)) has been 
        entitled to,'';
            (3) in paragraph (2)(C)(ii), by striking ``, including the 
        requirement that he has been entitled to the specified benefits 
        for 24 months,'' and inserting ``, including the requirement 
        that the individual has been entitled to the specified benefits 
        for the waiting period (as defined in subsection (j)),''; and
            (4) in the flush matter following paragraph 
        (2)(C)(ii)(II)--
                    (A) in the first sentence, by striking ``for each 
                month beginning with the later of (I) July 1973 or (II) 
                the twenty-fifth month of his entitlement or status as 
                a qualified railroad retirement beneficiary described 
                in paragraph (2), and'' and inserting ``for each month 
                beginning with the first month after the month in which 
                the individual first satisfies paragraph (2), and'';
                    (B) in the second sentence, by striking ``the 
                `twenty-fifth month of his entitlement' refers to the 
                first month after the twenty-fourth month of 
                entitlement to specified benefits referred to in 
                paragraph (2)(C) and''; and
                    (C) in the third sentence, by striking ``, but not 
                in excess of 78 such months''.
    (b) Schedule for Phase-Out of Waiting Period.--Section 226 of the 
Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 426) is amended by adding at the end the 
following new subsection:
    ``(j) For purposes of subsection (b) (and for purposes of section 
1837(g)(1) of this Act and section 7(d)(2)(ii) of the Railroad 
Retirement Act of 1974), the term `waiting period' means, with respect 
to an individual who first becomes entitled to benefits described in 
subparagraph (A) of subsection (b)(2), first achieves the status 
described in subparagraph (B) of such subsection, or first becomes 
entitled to specified benefits referred to in subparagraph (C) of such 
subsection in a month in--
            ``(1) for calendar year 2020, 18 months;
            ``(2) for calendar year 2021, 16 months;
            ``(3) for calendar year 2022, 14 months;
            ``(4) for calendar year 2023, 12 months;
            ``(5) for calendar year 2024, 10 months;
            ``(6) for calendar year 2025, 8 months;
            ``(7) for calendar year 2026, 6 months;
            ``(8) for calendar year 2027, 4 months;
            ``(9) for calendar year 2028, 2 months; and
            ``(10) for calendar year 2029 and each subsequent year, 0 
        months.''.
    (c) Conforming Amendments.--
            (1) Months that count towards waiting period.--
                    (A) In general.--Section 226(f) of the Social 
                Security Act (42 U.S.C. 426(f)) is amended by striking 
                ``24 months'' and inserting ``waiting period''.
                    (B) Sunset.--Effective January 1, 2029, subsection 
                (f) of section 226 of the Social Security Act (426) is 
                repealed.
            (2) Elimination of 1-month waiting period for individuals 
        with als.--Section 226(h)(1) of the Social Security Act (42 
        U.S.C. 426(h)(1)) is amended by inserting ``(or, beginning 
        January 1, 2029, 0 months)'' after ``1 month''.
            (3) Medicare description.--Section 1811(2) of such Act (42 
        U.S.C. 1395c(2)) is amended by striking ``entitled for not less 
        than 24 months'' and inserting ``entitled for not less than the 
        waiting period (as defined in section 226(j))''.
            (4) Medicare coverage.--Section 1837(g)(1) of such Act (42 
        U.S.C. 1395p(g)(1)) is amended by striking ``of the later of 
        (A) April 1973 or (B) the third month before the 25th month of 
        such entitlement'' and inserting ``of the third month before 
        the first month following the waiting period (as defined in 
        section 226(j)) applicable under section 226(b)''.
            (5) Railroad retirement system.--Section 7(d)(2)(ii) of the 
        Railroad Retirement Act of 1974 (45 U.S.C. 231f(d)(2)(ii)) is 
        amended--
                    (A) by striking ``, for not less than 24 months'' 
                and inserting ``, for the waiting period (as defined in 
                section 226(j) of the Social Security Act)''; and
                    (B) by striking ``could have been entitled for 24 
                calendar months, and'' and inserting ``could have been 
                entitled for the waiting period (as defined in section 
                226(j) of the Social Security Act), and''.
    (d) Effective Date.--Except as provided in subsection (c)(1)(B), 
the amendments made by this section shall apply to insurance benefits 
under title XVIII of the Social Security Act with respect to items and 
services furnished in months beginning at least 90 days after the date 
of the enactment of this Act (but in no case earlier than January 1, 
2020).

SEC. 4. NATIONAL ACADEMY OF MEDICINE STUDY AND REPORT ON DELAY AND 
              PREVENTION OF DISABILITY CONDITIONS.

    (a) Study.--The Secretary of Health and Human Services (in this 
section referred to as the ``Secretary'') shall request that the 
National Academy of Medicine conduct a study on the range of disability 
conditions that can be delayed or prevented if individuals receive 
access to health care services and coverage before the condition 
reaches disability levels.
    (b) Report.--Not later than the date that is 2 years after the date 
of enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall submit to Congress a 
report containing the results of the National Academy of Medicine study 
authorized under this section.
    (c) Authorization of Appropriations.--There is authorized to be 
appropriated to carry out this section $750,000 for the period of 
fiscal years 2020 and 2021.
                                 <all>

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