Trump Administration Follows Through on Longer-Term Skimpy Health Plans

In direct response to President Trump’s October 2017 Executive Order, the Departments of Health and Human Services (HHS), Labor, and the Treasury today issued a proposed rule that is intended to increase competition, choice, and access to lower-cost healthcare options for Americans. The rule proposes to expand the availability of short-term, limited-duration health insurance by […]

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GOP to Seek ‘Incremental’ Health Care Reform

While Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R.-Wisc.) told Fox Business that the new Republican goal was to seek “incremental” health care reform rather than repeal-and-replace, House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady (R.-Texas) said separately that the employer shared responsibility mandate of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) would be high on the chopping block. […]

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HHS Chief Says He Will Uphold the ACA

Health and Human Services (HHS) head Alex Azar, when pressed about the legality of Idaho’s plan to market non-Affordable Care Act (ACA) health policies, affirmed his support for the 2010 legislation that in essence federalizes standards for health insurance. “I’m not aware that our opinions or views have been solicited,” Azar said. “There are rules, […]

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Obamacare Enrollment Tops Out at 11.7 Million

With California being the last state to report its Obamacare enrollment figure for 2018, the final tally for the nationwide effort came in at 11.7 million sign-ups. California was among the last of the 11 states and District of Columbia to close their enrollment on Jan. 31. Earlier, with its exchanges closed on Dec. 15, […]

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Idaho First to Offer State-Based, Non-ACA Health Plans

Without obtaining federal permission, Idaho has announced plans to allow health insurers to offer policies that do not adhere to the standards of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), provided they also offer ACA-eligible plans. According to the Idaho Department of Insurance: Governor C.L. ‘Butch’ Otter and Lieutenant Governor Brad Little issued Executive Order No. 2018-02 […]

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Budget Resolution Includes Three More Tax Cuts

The continuing resolution to fund the federal government through Feb. 8, now working its way to the president’s desk, includes three tax cuts that will add $31 billion to the deficit since the deal includes no spending offsets. The three taxes, all related to the Affordable Care Act (ACA), have proven vastly unpopular on The […]

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States Can Now Add Work or Job Training Requirements to Medicaid

UPDATE: One day after announcing states could institute work requirements for Medicaid, Kentucky became the first state to do so as CMS approved its 2016 waiver request. The state now requires able-bodied adult recipients to participate in at least 80 hours per month of “employment activities,” which include jobs training, education and community service. The […]

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IRS Extends Deadline for Furnishing Form 1095-C to Employees

The IRS has extended by 30 days the deadline for providing Form 1095-C, Employer-Provided Health Insurance Offer and Coverage, to each employee. The new deadline is March 2, 2018, replacing the original Jan. 31 deadline. Form 1095-C affects Applicable Large Employers (ALEs), those with 50 or more employees, who are mandated to provide essential health benefits. […]

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Some State ACA Exchanges Still Open

A handful of states are still operating their Affordable Care Act (ACA) marketplace exchanges, even after the federal exchange — HealthCare.gov — closed down in mid-December for everyone except those in hurricane- or wind-ravaged areas. The federal exchange, even with a window half as long as in 2016, saw 8.8 million people sign-up for coverage […]

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Obamacare Employer Mandate Penalties Arrive in the Mail

The individual mandate of the Affordable Care Act (ACA, aka Obamacare) may be expiring — in 2019 — but the employer mandate is alive and well, and companies were sent notices in November advising them of any violations and the consequent tax penalty due. According to the employer mandate provision, companies with 50 or more […]

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