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March 12, 2012
In This Issue
At Last, the State Exchange Regulation Has Come Along
Federal Exchange Guidance Soon to Follow?
Sebelius Under Fire
CO-OPeration Makes it Happen
IPAB-alooza Continues
“Consumer Groups” and Unions Will Create a Pro-PPACA Supreme Court War Room
What We're Reading (Besides the Exchange Rules)
Only A Few Spots Left for NAHU's Upcoming Free Town Hall Webinar
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March 16-17: Region V Leadership Conference
March 21: NAHU Legislative Town Hall
March 31: Deadline for LPRT applications
April 5: Deadline for awards submissions
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At Last, the State Exchange Regulation Has Come Along

Life isn’t like a song now, but at least our days of waiting are over. This morning, the federal Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released a revised version of the federal rules regarding the “Establishment of Exchanges and Qualified Health Plans and Exchange Standards for Employers.” Parts of the 644-page regulation have been issued as a final rule, meaning that they will have the full force of law within 60 days of the regulation’s publication in the Federal Register on March 13. Read More

Federal Exchange Guidance Soon to Follow?

Now that at least one final rule on state-based exchanges has been released by HHS, what everyone is waiting for, both in the states and inside the beltway, is additional information about how a federal fallback exchange and federal/state “exchange partnerships” will work. Timothy Hill, deputy director of the Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight (CCIIO) at HHS, while speaking at a conference offered by America's Health Insurance Plans (AHIP) last week, indicated that this information will be provided to the public “soon,” that this information will likely come in the form of guidance, rather than a regulation, and that it will be released after all five of the proposed federal regulations are finalized. (For those keeping count at home, so far we have two.) Read More

Sebelius Under Fire

Secretary Sebelius appeared before a number of congressional hearings last week to testify about the FY 2013 budget for HHS. She fielded more than a few tough questions about the implementation of PPACA, and provided some very interesting responses about what her department is up to and how they are spending federal funds for health reform implementation. Read More

CO-OPeration Makes it Happen

Over the last few weeks, NAHU has received many questions about the health insurance cooperative plans (CO-OPs) created by PPACA as an alternative to a government-run public plan option. Last month, CCIIO announced its first funding of about $639 million in low- and no-interest loans for seven groups in eight states, and that announcement has sparked many member questions about the plans, so we have prepared a primer on CO-OPS for your reference. Read More

IPAB-alooza Continues

The House Ways and Means and Energy and Commerce committees approved legislation (H.R. 452) last week to repeal the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) provisions of PPACA, and the legislation it is expected to come up for a floor vote when the House returns from recess the week of March 19. The bill is expected to pass the House, but one of the key questions surrounding the measure is with how much bipartisan support? Read More

“Consumer Groups” and Unions Will Create a Pro-PPACA Supreme Court War Room

When the Supreme Court meets later this month to hear oral arguments about the constitutionality of PPACA, you can expect those who support and oppose the law to use the case as a tremendous public relations opportunity. In particular, the “consumer advocacy” community that approves of PPACA is planning a coordinated messaging campaign, complete with a “war room,” and they met with Obama administration officials last week to inform them of their planned activities and receive the support of the White House for all that they have planned.  Read More

What We're Reading (Besides the Exchange Rules)

Before we were given a 644-page present from HHS this morning, we were reading a few other interesting health policy items.  Read More

Only A Few Spots Left for NAHU's Upcoming Free Town Hall Webinar

Make plans to join NAHU CEO Janet Trautwein, national Legislative Council Chairman Troy Cook, and SVP of Government Affairs Jessica Waltman on Wednesday, March 21 at 1:00 p.m. EST for a free 90-minute webinar to discuss NAHU's federal legislative and regulatory priorities. Read More

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