Translating Coverage into Care: Answers to Common Post-Enrollment Questions

Open enrollment has ended, and almost 12 million individuals signed up for coverage through the state and federal marketplaces. While enrolling in health insurance raises an abundance of questions, selecting a plan is only the beginning. Once you’re in a plan, using your benefits, accessing care, and potential confusion about the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) individual mandate bring their own set of challenges. To help answer common post-enrollment questions, we cracked open our trusty Navigator Resource Guide. Continue reading

Coalition Demands Crucial Information About Association Health Plan Rulemaking

On March 1st, a coalition of stakeholders, including Georgetown University’s Center on Health Insurance Reforms (CHIR), the DC Health Benefit Exchange, the Acting Attorney General of Hawaii, AFL-CIO, Center on Capital & Social Equity, Families USA, National Alliance on Mental Illness, National Partnership for Women & Families and the Small Business Majority released a letter calling on the Department of Labor (DOL) to withdraw or substantially delay the proposed regulation regarding Association Health Plans (AHPs). Continue reading

Stepping in When States Don’t Step Up: First “State-Based” Plans Filed in Idaho, Violating the Affordable Care Act

Last week Blue Cross of Idaho filed the first “state-based” health plans, products that don’t comply with the Affordable Care Act’s requirements for coverage offered on the individual market. When a state can’t or won’t enforce federal law, the Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) is supposed to step in. CHIR’s Rachel Schwab outlines HHS’ authority to protect the rule of law and ensure that Idaho consumers continue to receive the benefits they are promised under the ACA. Continue reading

New Funding Opportunity Allows States to Bolster Consumer Protections

On February 5th, the Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight (CCIIO) put out a Notice of Funding Opportunity. The federal agency anticipates that $8.1 million is available for state initiatives focused on insurers’ compliance with federal market reforms and consumer protections, giving states the opportunity to improve their oversight efforts. With the February 26th deadline for letters of intent just around the corner, CHIR’s Rachel Schwab provides an overview of the new grant program. Continue reading

The Future of the Affordable Care Act under President Trump: Stakeholders Respond to Proposed 2019 Marketplace Rule. Part II: Consumer Advocates

The final 2019 Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters has been submitted to the White House for review. The initial proposal included a number of changes to the Affordable Care Act’s essential health benefits, marketplace operations, and other consumer protections. In this second post in a series of blogs analyzing public comments on the proposed rules, CHIR’s Rachel Schwab examines responses from a range of consumer advocacy groups to better understand who the rule could impact. Continue reading

Soldiering On

This past week’s stunning election results have put the future of the Affordable Care Act – and health coverage for millions of people – in jeopardy. What the new President and Congress will replace the law with is anyone’s guess. Sabrina Corlette, Kevin Lucia and JoAnn Volk discuss how we at CHIR will continue our mission of improving access to affordable and adequate insurance through reasoned, evidence-based research and analysis. Continue reading

State-Run SHOPs: An Update Three Years Post ACA Implementation

Small-business owners face unique challenges covering their employees; to lower barriers and increase options, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) created the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP). In a new blog published by The Commonwealth Fund, CHIR experts Emily Curran, Sabrina Corlette, and Kevin Lucia evaluate the current state of these marketplaces three years into implementation. Continue reading

New Health Affairs Policy Brief Examines the Regulation of Health Plan Provider Networks

Limited networks have become increasingly common on ACA marketplaces, comprising almost half of all offerings during the first two years of the exchanges. In a new policy brief for Health Affairs, CHIR experts Justin Giovannelli, Kevin Lucia, and Sabrina Corlette examine what the states and the federal government are doing to ensure that marketplace plan networks are adequate and transparent. Continue reading

Factors Affecting Health Insurance Enrollment Through the State Marketplaces: Observations on the ACA’s Third Open Enrollment Period

Despite declining funding, enrollment through the state-based marketplaces increased nearly nine percent during the third open enrollment period. To learn what assistance and outreach strategies were most effective in attracting consumers, we surveyed marketplace officials to gain their unique insights and share major findings in our latest report. Continue reading