To Understand How Consumers Are Faring in the Individual Health Insurance Markets, Watch the States

Through both inaction and design, federal policymakers have put the onus on states to ensure access to affordable, adequate health insurance. In a new work for The Commonwealth Fund, CHIR researchers are launching an interactive map that will track and describe state actions likely to affect residents’ access to individual market coverage. Continue reading

Look Past the Jargon and the Trump Administration’s Risk Adjustment Decision Ultimately Hurts People with Pre-existing Conditions

The Trump administration recently decided to suspend payments under an obscure Affordable Care Act program called risk adjustment. The issue is technical and full of jargon, but at bottom it’s about undermining protections for people with pre-existing conditions. CHIR’s Sabrina Corlette explains why. Continue reading

The Road Not Traveled: How Policy, Business Decisions in Iowa Led to Higher Premiums

Iowa’s legislature recently made the extraordinary decision to abdicate that state’s authority over health insurance products. And in doing so they’ve made a bad insurance market worse. In their latest piece for the Commonwealth Fund’s To the Point blog, CHIR’s Sabrina Corlette and Kevin Lucia team up with actuaries at Wakely Consulting Group to assess what premiums and marketplace enrollment in Iowa would look like if the state had taken a slightly different path. Continue reading

A Main Reason New York and Massachusetts Will Sue the Administration Over the Final AHP Rule? Fraud and Abuse

New York Attorney General Barbara Underwood (D) and Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey (D) announced that they will sue the administration over the final association health plan rule released by the Department of Labor on June 19, arguing that it is unlawful, will result in fewer consumer protections, and “invite[s] fraud, mismanagement and deception.” CHIR’s Emily Curran dives into association health plans and their complicated history. Continue reading

June Research Round Up: What We’re Reading

State officials, insurers, and consumer advocates and assisters are gearing up for a hectic 2019 enrollment season as federal uncertainty threatens the stability of the individual market. CHIR’s Olivia Hoppe dives into research about how the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has affected consumers’ access to insurance coverage and care. She also looks at research on reasons behind this year’s increased premium rates and last year’s surprisingly successful Open Enrollment season.  Continue reading

What’s in the Association Health Plan Final Rule? Implications for States

The Trump administration has released new rules to expand the availability of association health plans that are exempt from many of the Affordable Care Act’s consumer protections. In her latest article for State Health & Value Strategies’ Expert Perspectives blog, CHIR’s Sabrina Corlette covers key provisions of the new policy and digs into the implications for states, insurance markets, and the consumers and small businesses that purchase private coverage. Continue reading

State Efforts to Pass Individual Mandate Requirements Aim to Stabilize Markets and Protect Consumers

A handful of states are moving forward with plans to implement state-level individual health insurance mandates in light of Congress’s recent elimination of the federal mandate’s financial penalty. In their latest post for The Commonwealth Fund’s To the Point blog, CHIR experts Dania Palanker, Rachel Scwab and Justin Giovannelli analyze new sate individual mandate laws and highlight innovative models that were considered in states. Continue reading

New Report Documents Barriers for People with Mental Illness, Substance Use Disorders Buying Coverage Before the ACA

In a report released this week by the National Alliance for Mental Illness (NAMI), Georgetown researchers Dania Palanker, JoAnn Volk and Kevin Lucia document the many ways that individual market plans available before the Affordable Care Act (ACA) fell far short of providing adequate, affordable coverage for people with mental illness and substance use disorders. Continue reading

Stakeholder Views on the Proposed Short-Term Plan Insurance Rule: Key Takeaways from Our Review of Comment Letters

In February, the Trump administration published a proposed rule to expand the availability of short-term, limited duration insurance by relaxing federal restrictions put in place by the Obama administration. Federal agencies received over 9,000 comments in response. In a four-part blog series, CHIR dug into comments to evaluate the proposed rule’s potential impact on consumers, major medical insurers, states, and sellers of short-term plans. Here’s what we found. Continue reading