Tag: HHS

Medicaid Expansion Could Improve Access to Behavioral Health Services, HHS Says

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has released a report showing that states can improve access to behavioral health services for residents by expanding Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. “Substance use disorders and mental illness are prevalent and serious public health problems in American communities,” the HHS says in a press […]

Reform Reinsurance Fund Refund Requests Due Soon

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services announced an April 30 deadline for claiming certain overpayments of the transitional reinsurance fee. The announcement covers overpayments due to miscalculating enrollment counts on which the fee is based. Such miscalculations occur for two reasons, CMS said: misapplication of a permitted method for determining the annual enrollment count; […]

HHS Secretary Says Sorry Over Failed Launch of Health Care Reform Website

In apologizing for the failed launch of the healthcare.gov website, U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius conceded to a House committee panel that accessing the site has been a “miserably frustrating experience for way too many Americans.” She expressed frustration regarding the flawed launch of the site, to be used to purchase affordable […]

3rd Circuit: For-profit Cannot Avoid Contraceptive Mandate Based on Religion Objections

For-profit, secular corporations cannot argue that they are exercising religious beliefs to avoid the contraceptive coverage mandate under health care reform, the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled July 26. Such entities are “artificial beings” created to make money and cannot exercise religion,” which is an inherently “human” right,” the 3rd Circuit opined. Accordingly, […]

Stop-Loss Insurers Would Not Be Health Exchange ‘Navigators’ Under HHS Proposal

The health reform law provides that entities called “Navigators” will assist consumers and small businesses in researching health insurance exchanges — but stop-loss insurers for self-funded health plans won’t be one of them. Those insurers, as well as individuals and other entities with too close a financial relationship to such insurers, would be excluded from […]

Small Employers May See Fewer Choices on SHOP in 2014, HHS Says

A health reform requirement that all insurers offer four levels of health coverage to small businesses would be delayed until 2015 under proposed rules scheduled to be published March 11 in the Federal Register. Under the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services proposal, small employers may get one choice of health coverage in 2014. […]

Feds Step Up Health Reform Implementation With New Rules

It’s been busy recently for the federal government when it comes to implementing various health reform requirements. Here’s an overview of new guidance issued the week of Feb. 25-March 1 on health insurer fees, market reforms, the Small Business Health Options Program, multiple employer welfare arrangement regulation and information reporting. Self-insured Health Plans Exempt from […]

Reform’s Essential Health Benefit Rule Clarifies Employer Plan Obligations

Health reform’s final essential health benefits rule makes it clear that self-insured and large group health plans do not need to comply with limits on growth in employee cost-sharing, offer all 10 categories of essential health benefits, or meet actuarial minimums like small-group and individual policies. However, the regime explained in the rule is still […]