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Health-Exchange-Alert

November 18, 2019 | Daily News

CMS on Friday (Nov. 15) withdrew a proposed guidance letter on Medicaid block grants that had been under review at the White House budget office since June, but the agency on Monday (Nov. 18) reiterated recent comments from Administrator Seema Verma promising that it will soon issue guidance on new ways for states to finance Medicaid.

November 18, 2019 | Daily News

Advocates for Medicaid expansion are claiming another electoral victory after Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards (D) narrowly won re-election on Saturday (Nov. 16).

November 18, 2019 | Daily News

Democratic Presidential Candidate Elizabeth Warren laid out a strategy for transitioning to Medicare for All under which she would use her first 100 days as president to reverse the Trump administration’s regulatory changes to the Affordable Care Act, defend the law from the GOP challenge in Texas, and support using reconciliation to pass a Medicare-like public option that would be available for all Americans, reform the ACA and lower the Medicare eligibility age to 50.

November 15, 2019 | Daily News

The Trump administration’s proposal that health insurers be required to disclose the rates they negotiate with providers was immediately blasted by insurers, who said the rule if finalized would confuse patients with complex information and undermine competition.

November 14, 2019 | Daily News

A federal appeals court panel seems inclined to issue a narrow ruling in a lawsuit challenging the Trump administration’s rule expanding association health plans, with two of the three judges on the panel repeatedly asking during oral arguments Thursday (Nov. 14) if they can resolve the case without directly deciding whether the rule violates the Affordable Care Act.

November 14, 2019 | Daily News

House and Senate Democrats called on the Senate Appropriations health subcommittee to reschedule a previously postponed markup of the Labor-HHS spending bill, which includes a Democratic-authored amendment to block the Trump administration’s rule withholding Title X funding from facilities that perform abortions or refer patients for abortion.

November 13, 2019 | Daily News

Plan selections leapt from 177,000 to more than 930,000 through Nov. 9, according to CMS’ second weekly snapshot on healthcare.gov activity, which indicates that sign-ups are stable despite the technical problems on the first day of enrollment.

November 13, 2019 | Daily News

The House Energy & Commerce health subcommittee on Wednesday (Nov. 13) unanimously approved two bills to improve maternal health, including a bill that would allow states to extend Medicaid eligibility for up to one year after a beneficiary gives birth and receive a higher federal match rate.

November 12, 2019 | Daily News

CMS proposed a wide-ranging new rule Tuesday (Nov. 12) that the agency says will crack down on states manipulating Medicaid supplemental payments in order to obtain extra federal matching funds.

November 12, 2019 | Daily News

CMS will soon release a highly anticipated guidance letter that will invite states to use federal block grants to cover non-disabled adult Medicaid beneficiaries, Administrator Seema Verma said Tuesday (Nov. 12).

November 12, 2019 | Daily News

Sources suggest that California progressive Rep. Ro Khanna’s legislation that would give states flexibility to design a single-payer health system using money from all existing public programs would be a heavy political lift, particularly since seniors are wary of changes to Medicare and employers oppose policies that give states authority over self-insured large group plans.

November 12, 2019 | Daily News

Stakeholders that support and took advantage of the Trump administration rule expanding association health plans are hopeful a federal appeals court will overturn a district judge’s decision to toss key parts of the rule, which a pro-AHP source argued has upended coverage for thousands of Americans.

November 08, 2019 | Daily News

White House Domestic Policy Advisor Joe Grogan suggested that lawmakers are close to an agreement on surprise billing legislation and believes that something will pass either stand alone or attached to drug pricing measures by the end of the year.

November 08, 2019 | Daily News

A new study by the Commonwealth Fund highlights the dozens of states that have codified some of the Affordable Care Act’s protections for people with preexisting conditions that are under threat by Texas v. USA, but sources stress that state governments can only do so much for residents without federal support.

November 07, 2019 | Daily News

A second federal judge on Thursday (Nov. 7) struck down an HHS rule that would allow health care workers to refuse to provide care based on their moral or religious beliefs.

November 07, 2019 | Daily News

Senate Finance Committee ranking Democrat Ron Wyden (OR) warned that a provision in a bipartisan budget reform measure sponsored by Budget Chair Mike Enzi (R-WY) and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) could portend the end of traditional Medicare if enacted.  The bill would set up an automatic budget reconciliation process for debt reduction that would kick in should the Congressional Budget Office determine the debt would be higher at the end of a decade than it would be under the budget resolution. The Budget Committee approved the legislation 15-6 on Wednesday.

November 06, 2019 | Daily News

More than 177,000 Americans selected health care plans through healthcare.gov from Friday (Nov. 1) through Sunday (Nov. 3), CMS announced in its first “weekly enrollment snapshot” of the season, and a key former Obama official says the numbers suggest the widespread enrollment problems on day one were more serious than the agency acknowledged.

November 06, 2019 | Daily News

Kentucky will likely abandon its controversial plan to adopt Medicaid work requirements as Democrat Andy Beshear claimed victory over incumbent Republican Gov. Matt Bevin in a closely fought race for governor Tuesday night (Nov. 5).

November 05, 2019 | Daily News

Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act reduced preventable hospitalizations in states that opted into the expanded program in 2014, according to a new report published in Health Affairs.

November 05, 2019 | Daily News

Problems with the federal marketplace that stopped consumers from enrolling in coverage on the first day of open enrollment have been fixed, CMS says, and navigators also tell Inside Health Policy that healthcare.gov now seems to be running smoothly.

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