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Healthcare Reform

ACA Individual Mandate Repeal Could Cut Insured Number By 13M

November 17, 2017 - As a potential repeal of the ACA’s individual mandate faces the US Senate, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and Joint Tax Committee (JTC) found that a repeal would cut the number of insured individuals by four million in 2019. In an analysis released this week, CBO and JTC estimated that a repeal of the mandate would reduce the federal deficit by $338 billion between 2018 and 2027,...


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Maine Referendum Expands Medicaid Despite Governor Opposition

by Thomas Beaton

The state of Maine has become the first state to expand Medicaid through a ballot vote that overrides Governor Paul R. LePage’s (ME-R) previous decisions to block the expansion, according to national news outlets. On Tuesday, Maine residents...

ACA Open Enrollment Rate Expected to Drop Up to 13% in 2018

by Thomas Beaton

Analysts expect up to a 13 percent drop in open enrollment on the ACA marketplace exchange in 2018,  according to Standard and Poor’s Global (S&P Global). Only 10.1 million to 11.4 million individuals are expected in enroll in...

Before CSR Cuts, ACA Health Plans Expected Stable Premiums

by Thomas Beaton

(CSRs) under the Affordable Care Act, payers were expecting only modest premium increases and some continued profitability, according to a USC Brookings report. However, the uncertainty resulting from federal waffling over the continuation of...

CBO: Alexander-Murray Healthcare Bill Could Save $3.8B

by Thomas Beaton

The Bipartisan Health Care Stabilization Act of 2017, also known as the Alexander-Murray compromise bill, would save the federal government $3.8 billion without drastically changing the number of individuals with health insurance, the Congressional...

Alexander-Murray Bill Offers ACA Market Stabilization, Flexibilities

by Thomas Beaton

A new bipartisan bill proposed by Senators Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Patty Murray (D-WA) is an attempt to stabilize and protect provisions of the ACA while allowing for greater state flexibility to manage healthcare. The Bipartisan Health Care...

Iowa Withdraws 1332 Waiver for Insurance Market Stabilization

by Thomas Beaton

Iowa Insurance Commissioner Doug Ommen has withdrawn his state’s application for a 1332 waiver to stabilize its insurance markets in 2018.   The proposed stopgap measure  included a single, standardized plan available to every...

Bipartisan Senate Compromise May Reinstate CSRs, Alter 1332 Waivers

by Thomas Beaton

Senators Lamar Alexander (R-TX) and Patty Murray (D-WH)  have floated a bipartisan deal to reinstate the ACA’s cost-sharing reductions (CSRs) and boost individual enrollment outreach in exchange for alterations to the state 1332 waiver...

States Approve Premium Hikes after Loss of Cost Sharing Reductions

by Thomas Beaton

Several states have decided to either increase or maintain expected premium increases on individual and small group plans following the President’s decision to end the cost-sharing reductions (CSRs) that cover the cost of many Affordable...

Payers Express Concern Following Cost-Sharing Reduction Cuts

by Thomas Beaton

Several payer organizations have expressed deep concerns after President Trump announced plans to end the cost-sharing reduction (CSR) subsidies for ACA individual plans.. Organizations including AHIP, AMA, and AHA have previously urged Congress...

Executive Order Eases ACA Rules on Association Health Plans

by Thomas Beaton

An executive order signed by President Trump will lighten rules on association health plans (AHPs), which could allow groups of businesses to provide lower cost insurance without essential health benefits (EHBs), as reported by multiple news...

Senate to Vote on Funding CHIP for Five Additional Years

by Thomas Beaton

A bipartisan bill to continue CHIP funding for five more years and transition to a state-federal partnership will move to a Senate vote after being approved by the Senate Finance Committee.   The “Keep Kids’ Insurance Dependable...

Medicaid Directors Voice Concerns for Graham-Cassidy Bill

by Thomas Beaton

The National Association of Medicaid Directors (NAMD) argues that a hasty passage of the Medicaid reforms presented in the Graham-Cassidy bill will have significant consequences for public payer programs and the health outcomes of their beneficiaries....

Planning for Individual Insurance Exchange Stabilization in WA

by Thomas Beaton

State health insurance markets and their individual insurance exchanges have faced regular instability in the form of payer exits, imbalanced risk pools, and rising premiums that push out new and returning insurance consumers. As premiums go...

AHIP: Graham-Cassidy Bill a Poor Choice for Payers, Patients

by Thomas Beaton

AHIP believes that passage of the Graham-Cassidy Bill making the rounds in the Senate would adversely affect payer market through policies that destabilize the health insurance markets, reduce patient access to healthcare, and fail to meet the...

Veterans Gained Coverage under ACA, but May Lose Big from Repeal

by Thomas Beaton

While the Affordable Care Act (ACA) produced significant coverage gains for veterans, currently proposed repeal actions could hit this population particularly hard, according to a study from RAND Corporation. Prior to the ACA, 9.1 percent of...

AARP: Congress Must Take Action on ACA Market Stabilization Solutions

by Thomas Beaton

In order to protect healthcare consumers and stabilize the ACA marketplace, Congress must pass legislation that creates affordable and accessible coverage options, protects Medicaid and Medicare program funding, and expands prescription drug...

Governors Propose Health Insurance Market Stabilization Plan

by Thomas Beaton

Eight state governors have outlined their proposals for a health insurance market stabilization plan that would control premium increases and improve competition in the federal and state health insurance exchanges. In a letter sent to Congress,...

Medicaid Reform Requires Outcomes-Based Innovation, Better Data

by Thomas Beaton

Medicaid has steadily provided low-income patients with quality healthcare coverage and could further improve by addressing problematic areas through outcomes-based innovation and data analytics infrastructure, according to commentary published...

ACA “Skinny Repeal” Dies in Senate, Leaving Next Steps Uncertain

by Jennifer Bresnick

In the early hours of Friday morning, the Senate failed to pass its attempt at a “skinny repeal” of the Affordable Care Act, which would have eliminated the tax penalties associated with the individual mandate for insurance coverage...

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