Update: Judge O’Connor heard oral arguments in Texas v. United States on September 5, summarized in this Health Affairs article. It is not clear how quickly the judge will rule on a preliminary injunction. The Department of Justice, despite arguing to undo preexisting condition protections, has admitted that a negative decision, even if appealed, would bring chaos and uncertainty during open enrollment this fall.
On July 7, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced a policy change that could fundamentally undermine the individual market, endangering health care for millions of people who get health care through the individual marketplace. CMS announced it will not distribute more than $10 billion out of a "risk adjustment" pool which is funded by insurers who participate in the individual and small-business markets. The risk adjustment program collects funds from insurers that cover healthier people and redistributes those funds to plans that have sicker enrollees.
The Trump administration just released a final policy that will substantially increase the number of Americans who could be sold junk insurance in the form of “Association Health Plans,” or “AHPs.” This new and very dangerous step in the administration’s ongoing campaign to sabotage the Affordable Care Act could greatly reduce people’s access to essential health care, especially for those with preexisting conditions and older adults.
Much of the report’s media coverage has focused on the projected 15 percent premium increase for 2019 as a measure of the damage being done by the Trump administration and its Republican allies in their ongoing campaign to sabotage health insurance markets. In truth, this sabotage has imposed a much higher cost on millions of families in America.
Earlier this week, the Trump Administration released its proposed budget for fiscal year 2019. This is the president’s first full budget proposal since taking office and it outlines the administration’s vision for the future. Although the budget proposal is non-binding and many elements need congressional approval for enactment, the administration can implement some of these policies on its own, through regulations, executive orders, and guidance. This is an eye-opening and chilling road map for where the administration wants to take health care for families and children.
Republican congressional leaders are not giving up on repealing the Affordable Care Act and the newest amendment only makes a bad bill worse.
The House GOP has released a new version of the American Health Care Act (AHCA) which makes draconian cuts to Medicaid and leaves millions to struggle with higher premiums and deductibles.
Exchange directors, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and insurers have an enormous opportunity to help consumers choose the plan that is right for them and make the enrollment process more efficient by improving the display of plan information on marketplace websites.
Recently the Obama administration released new standards governing Medicaid managed care plans. These managed care rules haven’t been updated since 2002, and a lot has changed in the past 14 years. There are currently over 72 million people enrolled in Medicaid, and three-quarters are enrolled in managed care.