Proposed Rule on Basic Health Program Impedes States’ Progress

Recently, CMS issued a proposed rule modifying the federal funding methodology for the Basic Health Program (BHP) for 2019 and 2020. Under the proposal, technical changes could cause participating states to lose $300 million in federal funding. While funding for the programs is being debated, we checked in on how Minnesota and New York’s BHPs are faring amidst federal uncertainty. Continue reading

August Research Round Up: What We’re Reading

Summer is over, but health policy researchers have hardly taken a vacation. In August’s research round up, CHIR’s Olivia Hoppe looks into studies examining specialty drug coverage across commercial plans, the effects of the Affordable Care Act on people of different income levels, individual market premium predictions, employer-sponsored high-deductible health plans, and surprise medical bills in employer-sponsored insurance. Continue reading

Helping People Select Insurance Coverage: A Tale of Two Programs

Shopping for and selecting a new health coverage plan can be challenging for many consumers. One government program – Medicare Part D – recently announced a new policy to make the process of selecting a prescription drug plan easier for beneficiaries. Sabrina Corlette compares the Medicare approach to that taken by the health insurance marketplaces – and shares new CHIR research on state actions to simplify consumers’ shopping experiences. Continue reading

The ACA in 2014: Helping Consumers Transition to New Coverage

The start of 2014 marks the transition to new health plans that must meet ACA standards for adequacy and affordability. But, as with any transition, there can be disruptions, particularly for people who are in the middle of treatment or need drugs that may not be on a new plan’s formulary. HHS has recently released fact sheets and an interim final rule to help consumers and health plans make a smooth transition. JoAnn Volk has this overview – and answers some common consumer questions. Continue reading