News

Which states can make themselves immune to a subsidy ruling?

Now that the U.S. Supreme Court has decided to hear a case challenging the legality of Affordable Care Act subsidies, many states are looking into options that would make them immune to a potential ruling invalidating subsidies.

 

Healthcare.gov glitch prevents legal immigrants from enrolling

Although the enrollment period for the federal health insurance exchange has so far been much smoother than last year, legal immigrants have been dealing with a particular hiccup, reported the Associated Press.

John Boehner opts for Obamacare, not Medicare

House Speaker John Boehner turned 65 on Monday, but he opted to keep his "expensive" Affordable Care Act plan--$449 per month, with a $1,000 deductible--instead of signing up for Medicare.

Payer-pharma partnerships move 'beyond the pill'

Pharamceutical companies should implement "beyond-the-pill" strategies that move past their traditional business model and work with payers in new ways to meet the challenges facing the healthcare industry.

Brokers see increased shift of employees to private exchanges

With looming healthcare costs on the rise, employers continue to shift their employees to a private exchange. In 2014, nearly 3 out of 4 brokers had clients who stopped providing coverage for their employees and told them to purchase their own health insurance, according to a recent survey from Benefitter.

Michael Cannon: Insurance subsidies could be ACA's undoing

The insurance subsidies available in the federally run insurance marketplaces are not authorized by the Affordable Care Act and are therefore illegal, according to Michael Cannon, director of health policy studies at the libertarian Cato Institute.

Colorado CO-OP shows how nonprofit insurers are disrupting markets

The consumer operated and oriented plan (CO-OP) in Colorado exemplifies how the nonprofit insurers are disrupting health insurance markets across the country: It enrolled 14,000 members last year, primarily by undercutting the lowest prices for plans sold on the state's health insurance exchange. And the CO-OP has lowered its exchange plan premiums by an average of 10 percent for the second enrollment period that began this week, reported the Denver Post.

Feds could alter how insurers use reference pricing

As more insurers implement reference pricing to help offset rising healthcare costs, the Department of Labor is deciding whether to change an Affordable Care Act provision that would alter how health plans calculate out-of-pocket costs related to the pricing method, Managed Care reported.

Medicaid expansion news from 4 states

Recent news reports describe the challenges of reforming Medicaid in California, Indiana, Montana and Pennsylvania and what these states are doing in response.   

Some hospitals seek upfront payments from insured patients

Some hospitals and medical groups are starting to make insured patients pay out-of-pocket costs up front.

Washington state stands behind troubled insurance marketplace

Washington's insurance commissioner stands behind the state's insurance marketplace despite an ongoing struggle to transfer information from the site to payers.

CMS Compare sites lack relevant cost and quality information, GAO report says

The Medicare enrollment process is daunting enough as it is. Now a pair of new reports highlight ways the government is making it even harder for seniors to get information about their benefits--and the consequences to beneficiaries. 

3 factors affecting the ACA's future

The Affordable Care Act has faced many obstacles and challenges aiming to prevent implementation of its various provisions--and more are yet to come, according to CBS News.

How insurers benefit from a friendly relationship with feds

Though historically on the opposite of most issues, insurers and federal officials have developed a mutually beneficial relationship that will likely grow stronger in the next few years.

Plan choices and premiums rise on federal exchange

Shoppers on Healthcare.gov will have more product choices in 2015, but premiums may rise for many customers unless they switch health plans, according to a New York Times analysis of data released Friday by the Obama Administration.

Court rejects ACA contraceptive challenge

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia rejected a challenge Friday by religious nonprofit groups, reports the Associated Press. 

Obama says he did not mislead public on ACA, spars with reform 'architect'

President Barack Obama denied charges that he mislead Americans about the healthcare reform law in order to get it passed.

How $25 gift cards are driving women to get mammograms

Hudson Health Plan, a nonprofit Medicaid plan owned by MVP Health Care, is taking steps to ensure its members get important preventive health screenings like mammograms. Since 2012, the Hudson Valley-based insurer's customer service representatives have been calling members to encourage them to get their mammograms. And to incentivize their members, Hudson Health gives them a $25 gift card when they undergo a mammogram.

Company aims to help uninsured without actually insuring them

Health insurers have lots of competition vying for the same consumers, especially in the health insurance exchanges, but one non-traditional company could be looking to compete against traditional insurers in a whole new way.

Open enrollment round two gets mostly positive rollout

The second open enrollment period for health insurance exchanges began Saturday with an overall smooth rollout, though some consumers reported challenges signing up and some states had to deal with unexpected glitches.