CMS Provides Guidance on Premium Reductions

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released guidance on August 4th allowing insurance companies to provide temporary premium reductions during the 2020 coverage year in the individual and small group markets. Doing so would otherwise violate the federal prohibition on mid-year premium changes. Given the savings insurers have experienced due to a sharp ...

COVID-19-Related Policy Developments Continue at the Federal Level

As the country continues to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, Federal agencies continue to provide guidance to states and providers as they respond to the pandemic. As in our March, April and May articles, this post aggregates the latest updates from the federal pandemic response, including those relative to Medicare, Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance ...

Insights from the Front Lines of Contact Tracing

Although Health Policy News does not normally include first person perspectives or features on Public Consulting Group project work, we believe that the unprecedented circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic warrant an exception. As such, I wanted to share a quick note about my work on PCG’s recently-initiated contact tracing projects, assisting several states in building ...

State Mitigation of COVID-19 Related Costs

On April 25, 2020, Health Affairs published a piece by one of the editors of Health Policy News, entitled “States Should Act Now To Mitigate Commercial Insurance Costs Associated With COVID-19”[1]. The piece focuses on actions states can take to potentially mitigate costs associated with COVID-19—specifically, examining the impact that COVID-19-related health insurance expenditures in ...

The Federal Administration Continues to Release Guidance and Waivers in Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic

Health Policy News continues tracking federal-level action aimed at addressing the broad impact of the COVID-19 pandemic with a focus on actions to support states and providers in their efforts to respond to the pandemic and its impact. As in our March and April articles, this post aggregates the latest updates from the federal level, ...

Guidance for States on How to Properly Document Federal Funding During COVID-19 Response and Recovery

On March 19, 2020, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) released M-20-17, Administrative Relief for Recipients and Applicants of Federal Financial Assistance Directly Impacted by the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) due to Loss of Operations (henceforth “OMB memo”). Although many of the operational impacts and costs of COVID-19 are unknowable at this point, the memo ...

Payment Notice and Letter to Issuers in the Federally-facilitated Marketplaces Finalized for the 2021 Plan Year  

With filing deadlines quickly approaching, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released final versions of the Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters (NBPP) for 2021 and the 2021 Letter to Issuers in the Federally-facilitated Exchanges (Letter) on May 7, 2020. At the same time, CMS released accompanying guidance: Key Dates for Calendar Year ...

Updates on the Federal Response to COVID-19

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact the country, Congress and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) continue to advance funding opportunities, temporary policy changes and waivers to support states, providers, and the public in their efforts to address the pandemic and its broad impact. This article aggregates the latest updates on the ...

Updates on the State-Level Responses to COVID-19

As the U.S. continues battling the COVID-19 pandemic, individual states have enacted policy mandates and taken action to ensure patients have access to medication, healthcare, and COVID-19 testing and treatment—while minimizing barriers to these resources and/or the pre-approval needed to access them. With social distancing and the stay-at-home order still in effect, a nationwide focus ...

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