October 20, 2017

 


 

In This Issue
Fast Facts
Alexander-Murray Introduce NAHU-Supported Market Stability Bill
Operation Shout! NAHU Calls on Congress to Delay or Permanently Repeal the Cadillac/Excise Tax!
Senators Introduce Legislation to Extend Two-Year HIT Moratorium and Make it Deductible
Washington Update Podcast: How NAHU Sees the Market Stability Bill
Did You Miss Yesterday’s Compliance Corner Webinar on ERISA-Required Disclosures? Watch it Now!
HUPAC Roundup
What We’re Reading
Tools
E-mail the Editor
Visit the NAHU Website
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What We’re Reading

Alas, the Chicago Cubs will not be back in the Fall Classic to defend their World Series title. Kiké Hernández helped push the Dodgers ahead of the Cubs with a thrilling three-homer game, where they will next face either the Yankees or Astros. Meanwhile, we’ll go back to reading up on health policy.

AHIP, the American Academy of Family Physicians, the American Benefits Council, the American Hospital Association, the American Medical Association, the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, the Federation of American Hospitals, and U.S. Chamber of Commerce sent a letter to Senators Alexander and Murray in support of their market stability legislation.

The same coalition also sent a letter opposing the cutting off of CSRs and asking for Congress to restore funding.

HHS announced an exclusive 2018 Marketplace Enrollment Circle of Champions for agents and brokers who help enroll 20 or more individuals or small business through the marketplaces by December 15. Those who qualify will receive a special certificate, a badge for use on emails and website, and a customizable press kit. There will also be a special designation, “Enrollment Elite Circle of Champions” for those who enroll 100 or more consumers or small businesses.

CMS approved Oregon’s ACA Section 1332 waiver application to use federal funding to implement a reinsurance program similar to Alaska and Minnesota. 

Following President Trump’s executive order to expand the availability of short-term plans, at least one insurer has already said they plan to sell these policies once they become officially sanctioned.

A record 16 Democratic senators signed onto Bernie Sanders “Medicare for All” bill in August. It is highly doubtful that bill could ever see a committee hearing, let alone be passed and signed into law. But this Medicare-light bill may have more promising prospects, establishing a public option to allow individuals of all ages to buy into Medicare, including some with income-based tax credits.

The IRS announced that it will no longer accept tax returns from those who don’t indicate whether they had health insurance, despite the January executive order for federal agencies to lessen the burden of the law. An estimated 4.3 million taxpayers did not answer this in 2016.

Anthem announced that it plans to partner with CVS Health on a new pharmacy business in 2020, after its current contract with Express Scripts expires. They claim that the move will save consumers $4 billion annually.

Kaiser released a new survey on Medicaid, showing growth slowing from 3.9% in 2016 to 2.7% this year. Prescriptions drugs and long-term care drove much of the program’s costs, with the federal government covering 63% of overall costs.

This pharmaceutical executive is on the top list of potential nominees for replacing former HHS Secretary Tom Price, who resigned last month amid ethics concerns.

In case you missed it, last week CMS announced that they would extend equitable relief for beneficiaries dually enrolled in Medicare and Marketplace through September 30, 2018.

Rural economies were among the biggest to gain from the ACA, where a study found that the law created at least a half million jobs for doctors, nurses, paramedics, medical technicians, administrators and health care aides. The New York Times investigates what happens to these communities if the growth in healthcare funding dries up.

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