IRS Issues Guidance on Automatic Enrollment in Health Insurance

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS), in conjunction with the Department of Labor (DOL) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), recently released a notice (really more of an FAQ) on issues relating to the full implement of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) in 2014. The notice covers automatic enrollment in […]

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HHS Deems Health Insurance Hikes in Nine States ‘Unreasonable’

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has deemed as "unreasonable" health insurance rate hikes announced in nine states as high as 24 percent. In the decisions announced yesterday, HHS determined that, after independent expert review, two insurance companies have proposed unreasonable health insurance premium increases in nine states—Arizona, Idaho, Louisiana, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Virginia, […]

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Blue Cross Blue Shield First to Settle Over HITECH Breach Enforcement

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee (BCBST) has become the first company in the nation to settle over a medical data security breach, agreeing to pay $1.5 million to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The settlement stems from new security breach rules and fines imposed by 2009's Health Information Technology for Economic […]

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Health Insurance Rebates Kick in Aug. 1, Providing….

Rules from the Department of Labor (DOL) that kicked in Jan. 1 mandate that health insurers rebate to plan participants any money left over if they fail to achieve the goal of spending 80 to 85 percent of every premium dollar on medical care or health care quality improvement. The first payments would commence Aug. […]

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HHS Issues Final Rule on State Insurance Exchanges

The Department of Health and Human Services today announced policies to assist states in building health care insurance exchanges.  Starting in 2014, these one-stop marketplaces will allow consumers and small businesses to choose a private health insurance plan and offer the public the same kinds of insurance choices as members of Congress. The HHS final […]

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HHS Estimates That 105 Million More Americans Now Have Unlimited Health Benefits

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) prohibits health plans from imposing a lifetime dollar limit on most benefits received by Americans in any health plan renewing on or after Sept. 23, 2010.  While some plans already provided coverage with no limits on lifetime benefits, millions of Americans were previously in health plans that did not.   […]

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HHS Issues Final Regulations on Plain Language Health Insurance Summaries

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) today issued final regulations and sample templates for health insurers to follow in providing the Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC) mandated by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) of 2010. The SBCs will become available to consumers of private insurance no later than Sept. […]

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HHS Cites Trustmark for ‘Unreasonable’ Health Insurance Premium Increases

Health insurance premium increases in five states have been deemed “unreasonable” by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced recently. After independent expert review, HHS determined that Trustmark Life Insurance Company has proposed unreasonable health insurance premium increases in five states—Alabama, Arizona, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Wyoming.  The excessive rate […]

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States Receive Nearly $300 Million in CHIPRA Performance Bonuses

Twenty-three states that have implemented at least five of eight programs to streamline children's health insurance coverage and meet enrollment targets will receive more than $296 million in federal performance bonuses, the Health and Human Services (HHS) Department announced Wednesday. The performance bonus payments are funded under the Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act (CHIPRA), […]

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Obama to Let States Decide Benefits Under PPACA Health Insurance Exchanges

In a move that seemed to please neither side of the argument, President Obama has agreed to let the states decide benefit levels for health insurance policies that will be sold on the exchanges being set up for 2014 to service individuals and small groups. As initially envisioned in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care […]

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