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

How States are Simplifying Plan Choice in State-Based Marketplaces

Choosing the health plan that best meets your needs is no easy task, with much at stake in terms of both financial protection and access to care. In a new issue brief for The Commonwealth Fund, Christine Monahan, Sarah Dash, Kevin Lucia, and Sabrina Corlette examine the actions taken by state-based health insurance marketplaces to simplify health plan choices. Continue reading