The Draft 2022 Notice of Benefit & Payment Parameters: Implications for States

On November 25, the Trump administration released a proposed regulation, the 2022 “Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters.” It establishes policies governing the ACA marketplaces and insurance market reforms. In her latest article for the State Health & Value Strategies project, CHIR’s Sabrina Corlette focuses on several key provisions that will impact state insurance regulation and the operation of the marketplaces. Continue reading

November Research Roundup: What We’re Reading

As the autumn leaves change and the weather gets colder, we at CHIR are thankful for new health policy research. This November, Nia Gooding reviewed studies on policy interventions aimed at lowering health care costs, the impact of eliminating essential health benefits from private insurance plans, and tracking ACA marketplace premium costs for the coming year.  Continue reading

Navigator Guide FAQ of the Week: What Does My Plan Cover?

With Open Enrollment now well underway, consumers are weighing their options for 2021 and trying to find the right plan that meets their health needs. As consumers make their decision, it is important for them to understand what they are buying and what coverage their plan provides. Throughout the enrollment period, the CHIR team is highlighting frequently asked questions (FAQs) from our recently updated Navigator Resource Guide. In this installation, we answer FAQs about marketplace plans’ coverage standards. Continue reading

State Efforts to Protect Preexisting Conditions Unsustainable Without the ACA

On November 10, the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in a case that could result in the Affordable Care Act being declared unconstitutional. While there is no clear federal plan to protect people with preexisting conditions if this happens, some states have tried to enact their own laws. In their latest analysis for the Commonwealth Fund’s To the Point blog, CHIR’s Maanasa Kona and Sabrina Corlette assess whether these state-level efforts can fully protect people with preexisting conditions. Continue reading

Updating the Essential Health Benefit Benchmark Plan: An Unexpected Path to Fill Coverage Gaps?

Many feared that Trump administration rules issued in 2018 would result in less-generous benefits in Affordable Care Act health plans. However, five states have now enhanced their essential health benefit benchmark plans under these rules. In a post for the State Health & Value Strategies program, CHIR’s Sabrina Corlette and Manatt Health’s Joel Ario examine how these states were able to do so. Continue reading

On its 10th Anniversary, during a Public Health Crisis, the Affordable Care Act is More Important Than Ever

The past few weeks have tested the U.S. health care system. In a world where we are all at risk of contracting and spreading COVID-19, access to health care is a universal human need. On the 10th anniversary of the Affordable Care Act, CHIR takes some time to consider how battling this pandemic would have been even more difficult if it weren’t for this groundbreaking federal law. Continue reading

This Thanksgiving, We’re Thankful for the Affordable Care Act’s Protections

It’s that time of year again. Our team at CHIR is heading far and wide for Thanksgiving, and as we gather around different tables, we’ll be sure to give thanks. One thing on our minds this season is our gratitude for the ongoing insurance protections provided by the Affordable Care Act. CHIR’s Rachel Schwab highlights some of the reforms we’re grateful for. Continue reading

New Resources Arm Advocates with Tools to Defend Essential Health Benefits, Pre-Existing Condition Protections

On July 9, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral arguments in Texas v. United States, the court case challenging the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) constitutionality. The litigation is ongoing, but if the plaintiffs prevail, the law could be overturned in its entirety. With the federal court case looming, state policymakers and advocates are looking for ways to preserve access to coverage in the absence of the ACA’s protections, including steps to codify the law’s key provisions into state law. To aid in these efforts, Community Catalyst has teamed up with CHIR experts to create two new guides for its health insurance reform toolkit: The Advocate’s Guide to Pre-Existing Condition Protections and The Advocate’s Guide to Essential Health Benefits. Continue reading

Coming up Short: The Problem with Counting Short-Term, Limited Duration Insurance as Coverage

In April, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released an analysis of federal legislation to reverse the Trump administration’s rule expanding access to short-term, limited duration insurance policies, which do not have to comply with the Affordable Care Act’s consumer protections. CBO estimated that reversing the rule would result in 500,000 people going uninsured, predicated on the assumption that most short-term plans count as “insurance.” For people with preexisting conditions, nothing could be further from the truth. Continue reading

Stakeholders React to HHS’s Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters for 2020. Part 2: State Insurance Departments and Marketplaces

On April 18, 2019, the Department of Health and Human Services finalized changes to the Affordable Care Act marketplaces and insurance rules in the Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters for the 2020 plan year. The agency received over 26,000 comments on the proposal. To gauge stakeholder reactions, CHIR reviewed a sample of these comments. In the second part of our blog series, Rachel Schwab summarizes responses from a selection of state insurance departments and state-based marketplaces. Continue reading