Navigator Guide FAQ Of The Week: Who is Eligible for Financial Assistance?

President Biden has recently signed an executive order to re-open the federal marketplace for a COVID-19 Special Enrollment Period. The CHIR team will be highlighting a selection of relevant frequently asked questions (FAQs) from our recently updated Navigator Resource Guide for uninsured consumers who are seeking health coverage during this time. In this installation, we answer FAQs about financial assistance that may available to some individuals and families. Continue reading

An Opportunity to Protect Consumers and Ensure a Level Playing Field: Reversing Trump-era Rules on Association Health Plans

An executive order from President Biden is likely to prompt a review of Trump administration rules encouraging association health plans (AHPs) exempt from critical Affordable Care Act protections. CHIR’s Sabrina Corlette and Kevin Lucia assess what’s at stake and share thoughts on optimal federal policy going forward. Continue reading

Workplace Wellness Programs Have Overlooked Health Equity

One of President Biden’s first executive actions was to require the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to withdraw regulations governing workplace wellness programs. CHIR’s Julie Zuckerbrod considers how these programs can exacerbate racial and ethnic inequities in health care access and outcomes, and opportunities for the Biden administration to advance equity-focused regulations. Continue reading

Federal Policy Priorities for Preserving and Improving Access to Coverage: Perspectives from State-Based Marketplaces

The Affordable Care Act’s health insurance marketplaces provide a critical source of coverage and financial assistance. Federal actions under the Trump administration undermined the marketplaces, but the new administration and Congress have opportunities to implement and advocate for policies that strengthen state-based marketplaces (SBMs). In a new issue brief for the Commonwealth Fund, CHIR experts assessed how federal policy decisions have impacted SBMs and the consumers they serve by interviewing directors and officials from 17 marketplaces. Continue reading

Health Insurance Companies Spent Millions to Defeat the Affordable Care Act. Now They’re Embracing Policies to Expand It.

Health insurers spent millions to defeat the ACA in 2010. Ten years later, major insurers are joining a growing coalition of supporters working to expand the law. CHIR expert Megan Houston considers why insurers are now embracing the ACA while Democrats now control Congress for the first time since the ACA was passed a decade ago. Continue reading

Expanded Coverage For COVID-19 Testing Must Include Limits On Costs

President Biden has issued an Executive Order likely to expand the mandate for private insurers to cover, and waive cost-sharing, for COVID-19 testing. However, the Brookings Institution’s Loren Adler and Sabrina Corlette argue in a new blog post for Health Affairs that Congress will also need to act to ensure that the mandate doesn’t encourage price gouging by providers, and to fully eliminate cost barriers to universal testing. Continue reading

Georgia’s ACA Waiver Flouts Federal Law, Drawing a Legal Challenge

With the approval of the Trump administration, the state of Georgia is poised to upend the Affordable Care Act, abandon HealthCare.gov, and place the coverage of hundreds of thousands of Georgians at risk. In their latest post for the Commonwealth Fund, CHIR’s Justin Giovannelli, JoAnn Volk, and Kevin Lucia evaluate the potential impact of Georgia’s proposed reforms, should they be implemented. Continue reading

Many States with COVID-19 Special Enrollment Periods See Increase in Younger Enrollees

President Joe Biden directed his administration to reopen the federal health insurance marketplace, an action the Trump administration refused to take last year after the COVID-19 pandemic struck due to adverse selection concerns. In a new post for the Commonwealth Fund, CHIR experts discuss how states that created a broad special enrollment period (SEP) for the uninsured in response to the pandemic – and broadcast the opportunity through outreach efforts – saw an increase in younger enrollees, seemingly contradicting claims that reducing SEP barriers inevitably leads to adverse selection. Continue reading