It’s Not Time to Give Away Consumer Protections for Cost-Sharing Reduction Reimbursements

In the wake of a White House decision to end reimbursements to insurers for cost-sharing reduction (CSR) plans, a bipartisan agreement has emerged in Congress to restore them. However, negotiators are coming under pressure to make additional changes that would increase the number of uninsured and roll back protections for people with pre-existing conditions. CHIR’s Dania Palanker takes a look at what’s at stake and why it’s not worth compromising key Affordable Care Act protections in exchange for CSR payments. Continue reading

Trump’s New Rule on Birth Control is Basically Discrimination Against Women

The Trump administration recently released regulations allowing employers, colleges, and universities to eliminate birth-control coverage from their health-benefit plans because of religious or moral objections. CHIR expert Dania Palanker explains how these new rules will allow employers and schools to discriminate against women while undermining the importance of women’s health. Continue reading

State Options Blog Series: Federal Regulators May Weaken ACA Essential Health Benefits Requirements, Creating Need for States to Protect Consumers

In the third of a multi-part blog series on state options in the wake of federal actions to roll back or relax Affordable Care Act regulation, Dania Palanker reviews potential changes to the essential health benefit standard and the implications for consumers. She discusses what state legislatures and insurance regulators can do to ensure consumers continue to access affordable health care services. Continue reading

Graham-Cassidy 2.0: Taking Insurance Protections Out of the Individual Market

Another day, another version of the Graham-Cassidy bill. This new version makes numerous technical changes that continue to place health care for the roughly 90 million consumers who rely on the individual health insurance market or Medicaid at risk. CHIR expert Dania Palanker outlines how the bill could affect access to affordable coverage for women, people with chronic illness, older people, and others. Continue reading

Increasing Deductibles in Employer Coverage: A Story Over a Decade in the Making

A graph has been making the rounds on the internet comparing cumulative increases in deductibles since 2011 to growth in inflation, worker earnings and health insurance premiums since it was posted as part of a Wall Street Journal blog. But the graph only tells part of the story – the part that occurred after 2011. The story of increasing deductibles in employer based health insurance is a story that is over a decade in the making.

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As Administration Reviews Comments on Short-Term Insurance Plans, Analysis Finds Gaps in Coverage

The Obama Administration is reviewing feedback on its proposed rule to clamp down on the sale of short-term health plans. If finalized, the rule could help stabilize the Affordable Care Act marketplaces – and help protect consumers from being duped into buying plans that don’t meet their health needs. CHIR’s Dania Palanker shares what she found in a review of what short-term plans actually cover, as well as the mix of industry responses to the Administration’s proposed regulation. Continue reading