States Lean In as the Federal Government Cuts Back: Navigator and Advertising Funding for the ACA’s Sixth Open Enrollment

With open enrollment into the Affordable Care Act marketplaces beginning November 1st, there will be considerable divergence among states in the amount of information and personalized assistance consumers receive about coverage options. While the federally run marketplace has dramatically cut back its investments in both advertising and the Navigator program, the state-based marketplaces are making big investments in those activities. In their latest To The Point blog for the Commonwealth Fund, CHIR’s Sabrina Corlette and Rachel Schwab discuss the findings from a new survey of state-based marketplaces. Continue reading

States Opt to Run their Own Exchanges to Save Money, Reclaim Autonomy

Last month, the Board of New Mexico’s health insurance exchange voted to transition from HealthCare.gov to a state-based exchange. The state will undertake the task of building its own eligibility and enrollment platform with the hopes of launching a website in time for the 2021 plan year. This is the same exchange that, in 2015, called the federal platform HealthCare.gov the “safest, most risk-free way to proceed.” So, what changed? CHIR’s Rachel Schwab looks at the reasons behind the growing call to leave HealthCare.gov. Continue reading

Proposed “Public Charge” Rule Risks Immigrants’ Access to Private Coverage, Too

A federal proposal would make it more difficult for immigrants to obtain a green card if they’ve received certain public benefits like Medicaid. Although the policy doesn’t include the Affordable Care Act’s premium tax credits in its list of public benefits, there are several ways the proposed rule could place immigrants’ access to private coverage at risk. Sabrina Corlette takes a look. Continue reading

June Research Round Up: What We’re Reading

State officials, insurers, and consumer advocates and assisters are gearing up for a hectic 2019 enrollment season as federal uncertainty threatens the stability of the individual market. CHIR’s Olivia Hoppe dives into research about how the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has affected consumers’ access to insurance coverage and care. She also looks at research on reasons behind this year’s increased premium rates and last year’s surprisingly successful Open Enrollment season.  Continue reading

Stakeholders Respond to the Proposed Short-term, Limited Duration Insurance Rule. Part III: State Insurance Departments and Marketplaces

The Departments of Labor, Health & Human Services, and Treasury received over 9,000 comments on their proposed rule to expand the availability of short-term, limited duration insurance. CHIR reviewed comments submitted by stakeholders to better understand how the public is responding to the proposal. In part three of our four-part series, CHIR’s Sabrina Corlette summarizes feedback from state insurance departments and marketplaces. Continue reading

May Research Round Up: What We’re Reading

In this month’s research round up, CHIR’s Olivia Hoppe looks into analyses of the success of recent stabilization efforts, the consequences of current federal uncertainty on health insurance coverage, best practices from the federally facilitated marketplace (FFM), third-party payment programs, and why in the world hospital visits cost so much money for the privately insured. Continue reading

How Did State-Run Health Insurance Marketplaces Fare in 2017?

In a new Commonwealth Fund issue brief, CHIR’s Justin Giovannelli and Emily Curran interviewed leadership staff of 15 of the 17 state-run marketplaces to understand how states on the forefront of health reform perceived and responded to federal policy changes and political uncertainty in 2017. Their research finds that federal administrative actions and repeal efforts created confusion and uncertainty in 2017 that negatively affected state-run markets. Continue reading