Healthcare IT Interoperability, EHR interoperability, Hospital Interoperability

ACA

CMS Final Rule Extends Short-Term Health Insurance to 3 Year Max

August 2, 2018 - CMS has issued a final rule that triples the length of time a beneficiary can keep short-term health insurance. The rule allows individuals to purchase a new short-term, limited benefit health plan that lasts for 12 months, or extend enrollment in grandfathered policies up to three years. Payers offering short-term health plans must provide a standard, CMS-approved consumer notice...


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Insurance Coverage Rates Dip by 12% Due to High Premium Costs

by Thomas Beaton

Individual health plan enrollment between 2017 and 2018 fell by 12 percent as high premiums and a scarcity of subsidy assistance force consumers out of the market, according to an analysis from the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF). Health...

CMS Approves Wisconsin State Reinsurance Program

by Thomas Beaton

CMS has approved Wisconsin’s plan to launch a state reinsurance program from 2019 to 2023 to help reduce individual state premiums and control the growth of state healthcare spending. The program, called the Wisconsin Healthcare...

12 Attorneys General File Lawsuit Over Association Health Plans

by Thomas Beaton

A dozen state attorneys general are suing the Department of Labor (DOL) over the expansion of association health plan (AHPs).   In the suit, which was filed in the DC District Court of Appeals, the officials argue that broad...

CMS: We Will Make $10.4B in 2017 Risk-Adjustment Payments

by Thomas Beaton

CMS has issued a final rule that will allow the agency to disburse $10 billion in 2017 risk adjustment payments that had been in doubt due to a court ruling.   To comply with the initial outcome of a New Mexico lawsuit contending the...

Pros and Cons of Small Business Health Options Program Health Plans

by Thomas Beaton

Health plans offered through the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) exchanges allow payers to provide the nation’s smallest businesses with affordable plan options that offer critical health benefits. SHOP health plans...

CMS Cuts ACA Navigator Funding Grants by $26M for 2019

by Thomas Beaton

CMS has announced a $26 million cut to funding grants for ACA navigators, from $36 million down to $10 million. CMS will provide a minimum of $100,000 in each of the states that operate a federally-facilitated exchange (FFE). The funding...

Transitional Health Insurance Plays Key Role in Coverage

by Thomas Beaton

Transitional health insurance, otherwise known as a short-term health plan, is a temporary insurance policy intended to provide stop-gap coverage when an individual is in between ACA compliant policies.  The National Association of...

CMS Suspends $10.4B in Risk Adjustment Payments to Payers

by Thomas Beaton

CMS has temporarily withheld $10.4 billion in risk adjustment payments for 654 healthcare payers, citing a ruling in the US District Court of New Mexico that invalidated the agency’s risk adjustment methodology. The ruling, which...

CMS: Individual Health Plan, Federal Exchange Challenges Remain

by Thomas Beaton

CMS has released three new reports indicating that the individual health plan and federal exchange markets faltered somewhat in 2017 because of increasing premiums, decreasing competition, and stagnant enrollment. The agency believes that...

How to Drive Enrollment in the ACA Health Plan Marketplaces

by Thomas Beaton

Payers and states wishing to increase enrollment in the ACA health plan marketplaces should  create targeted advertisements, benchmark silver-tier plans as their primary exchange plan, and help consumers navigate health plan...

US Court: Payers Are Responsible for Risk Corridor Program Costs

by Thomas Beaton

Federal judges in the US Federal Circuit Court of Appeals have issued an opinion stating that healthcare payers, and not HHS, are responsible for the costs of the ACA’s risk corridor program. Chief Judge Sharon Prost filed the...

AHIP, Provider Groups Balk at DOJ Position on ACA Mandates

by Thomas Beaton

AHIP and a number of professional societies and provider groups are urging the Trump Administration to enforce key provisions of the the Affordable Care Act after the Department of Justice (DOJ) said it would not defend the ACA in a...

Department of Justice Argues Against ACA Essential Health Benefits

by Thomas Beaton

The Department of Justice (DoJ) has argued against the Affordable Care Act’s essential health benefits (EHBs) and the law’s individual mandate by supporting a lawsuit that argues the constitutionality of both laws,...

ACA’s Individual Mandate Boosted High-Income Enrollment Totals

by Thomas Beaton

The Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) individual mandate spurred greater high-income enrollment in health plans and is a key component of increasing enrollment and stability in the nation’s individual insurance markets, according to...

Early Health Insurance Premium Proposals Indicate Hikes for 2019

by Thomas Beaton

Significant increases to health insurance premiums are on the horizon for beneficiaries in multiple states as payers begin to share their 2019 rate plans.   A challenging regulatory landscape, complicated by policy changes that have...

Virginia Legislature Approves Medicaid Expansion

by Thomas Beaton

The Virginia General Assembly has passed Medicaid expansion as part of a two-year budget bill that could provide coverage to 400,000 newly eligible residents. The action would make Virginia the 33rd state in the US to expand Medicaid...

Uninsured Rate among Working Adults Rises to 15.5% in 2018

by Thomas Beaton

The uninsured rate of working adults ages 19 to 64 rose by more than 3 percent between 2016 and 2018, according to the Commonwealth Fund’s ACA Tracking Survey. In 2016, 12.2 percent of working adults lacked health insurance....

Payers Will Face Individual Health Plan Market Challenges in 2019

by Thomas Beaton

Payers participating in the individual health plan market will face challenges in 2019 based on the planned expansion of association health plans (AHPs), increased competition, and changing provider negotiations, according to the Urban...

Proposed Legislation May Lower Individual Premiums by 40%

by Thomas Beaton

Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Senator Susan Collins (R-ME), House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Greg Walden (R-OR) and Representative Ryan Costello (R-PA) have proposed legislation that aims to lower individual health plan...

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