This month, COVID-19 is once again is dominating the news cycle—and Health Policy News has a policy update for readers focused on efforts to prevent future infection surges. This month’s edition also includes tools for readers related to vaccine mandate compliance. Finally, we round out this edition with a federal policy update about implementation of the No Surprises Act.
Keep an eye out for an early edition in your inbox next month. In mid-November, we will release our fall white paper entitled “Looking Toward the Future: Health Policy Priorities and Actions in the First Year of the Biden Administration.” We will be hosting our annual fall policy webinar about the paper on November 18th, 2021, and are looking forward to discussing and engaging with you all virtually. Please use the following information to access the Teams webinar:
Or call in (audio only)
+1 512-879-3792,,965104483# United States, Austin
(866) 619-5581,,965104483# United States (Toll-free)
Phone Conference ID: 965 104 483#
COVID-19 Autumn Policy Roundup
As the surge of COVID-19 driven by the Delta variant begins to subside, government officials are looking for the most effective way to ensure there is not a future resurgence of the virus. This article looks at two main areas in which they are exerting their influence in doing so: vaccine booster shots and state vaccine mandates. To read more about the targeted approaches underway, click here.
Vaccine Mandates: Steps and Tools to Assist with Compliance
Several policy proposals are circulating at the federal level that affect various employer configurations and employees. These proposals would require some employers to verify vaccination status and/or monitor weekly testing compliance for employees who opt out of vaccines or have a qualified exemption. The first compliance deadline of November 22, 2021, for federal employees, is quickly approaching.
PCG subject matter experts compiled a checklist and developed a mobile application solution to assist the estimated 80 million employees that will be subject to vaccine mandates. To learn more about upcoming mandate deadlines, as well as the steps and tools to ensure compliance, click here.
The Federal Administration Issues More Guidance on the No Surprises Act
Implementation of the No Surprises Act (NSA) continued this fall with the release of a second interim final rule (IFR) on September 30, 2021. The NSA—which was signed into law as part of an appropriations package at the end of 2020—seeks to prevent the unexpected medical bills that uninsured individuals often face when they receive care for out-of-network providers in an emergency or otherwise unknowingly. Like the prior rule, given the limited time before provisions begin taking effect on January 1, 2022, the newest rule is an interim final rule.
The rule addresses topics related to dispute resolutions over charges between providers and payers and patients, as well as the good-faith estimates that must be provided to uninsured patients. Comments will be collected through December 6, 2021. To read more about the implementation of the No Surprises Act, click here.