Tag: market reforms

As Self-Funding Increases in Popularity, Two States Step up to Address Potential Stop-Loss Policy Concerns

In the wake of the Affordable Care Act’s insurance market reforms, policy experts have raised concerns that there could be greater incentives for small businesses to self-fund their health plans. Self-funding can be attractive for some small groups, but also can pose significant risks. In the wake of a white paper from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, two states have stepped up to address concerns. Ashley Williams has the latest.

Final Rule on Wraparound Coverage as an Excepted Benefit

The Obama administration released a final rule providing the requirements for wraparound coverage to qualify as an excepted benefit. Excepted benefits are generally exempt from the Affordable Care Act market rules and popular with employers who want to offer additional benefits. CHIR’s Sandy Ahn provides a summary of the rule.

Insurance Premium Surcharges for Smokers May Jeopardize Access to Coverage

While the ACA limits the power of insurance companies to charge higher prices to consumers based on health status and other factors, the law doesn’t stop insurers from imposing a premium surcharge on tobacco users that can raise the cost of coverage by as much as 50 percent. In a new blog post for the Commonwealth Fund, CHIR researchers discuss the pros and cons of tobacco rating and examine why some states have chosen to ban the practice.

Implementing the Affordable Care Act: Revisiting the ACA’s Essential Health Benefits Requirements

Within the next several months, federal officials must decide whether to maintain or modify their “transitional” approach to implementation of the Affordable Care Act’s essential health benefits (EHB) requirements. In a new issue brief for the Commonwealth Fund, CHIR researchers examine how states have exercised their flexibility under the current EHB rules.

New Report Finds that, Under the ACA, Consumers Nationwide Are Experiencing Improved Protections in the Individual Insurance Market

The ACA includes numerous consumer protections designed to remedy shortcomings in the availability, affordability, adequacy, and transparency of individual market insurance. However, because states continue to be the primary regulators of health insurance and implementers of these requirements, consumers are likely to experience some of these new protections differently, depending on where they live. CHIR’s latest issue brief finds that consumers nationwide will enjoy improved protections in each area targeted by the reforms.

The Affordable Care Act’s Disclosure Rules: Can They Improve Coverage, Raise Care Quality, and Cut Costs?

The Affordable Care Act is designed to expand access to affordable and adequate health insurance, improve the quality and efficiency of care, and constrain rising health costs. While the closely watched insurance marketplaces are key to these efforts, among the most promising provisions is the law’s new transparency framework. In this latest in a series of blogs for the Commonwealth Fund, Justin Giovannelli, Kevin Lucia and Sarah Dash take a look at one important but overlooked tool.

Update: State Decisions on the Policy Cancellation Fix

Implementation of the President’s proposed fix for health insurance policy cancellations rests with state officials and insurance companies. In this blog update for The Commonwealth Fund, Kevin Lucia, Katie Keith, and Sabrina Corlette provide the latest on states’ decisions, as well as an accompanying U.S. map.

2014 Brings New Protections for Consumers – and New Oversight Responsibilities for States

2014 brings sweeping new health insurance protections for consumers, but for those reforms to be realized state insurance regulators need to make sure health plans comply with the law. A recent report released by the NAIC consumer representatives details best practices and provides recommendations to states to improve enforcement and better protect consumers. Sabrina Corlette has this overview.

Don’t Be Fooled – ACA Coverage is a Better Deal for Just About Everyone

Some are questioning the adequacy of health insurance on the new marketplaces. But such concerns neglect to mention that these new plans will be a far better deal compared to what, up to now, has been available. Sabrina Corlette takes a look at the comprehensiveness of health insurance coverage, pre- and post-ACA.

The opinions expressed here are solely those of the individual blog post authors and do not represent the views of Georgetown University, the Center on Health Insurance Reforms, any organization that the author is affiliated with, or the opinions of any other author who publishes on this blog.