Another Exciting Day in Washington

5-2-16 An Exciting Day in Washington

The NAHU Principals Council, of which I am a member, periodically meets in Washington DC to speak with regulators and legislators concerning employee benefit issues. Last Thursday we met with Republican leadership to discuss the aftermath of 1095 reporting and to also get an update on the Excise Tax (formerly known as Cadillac Tax). Republicans… [Read More]

Educating Legislators about Healthcare Reform

healthcare cost2

Earlier this month, the President released his 2017 budget proposal which seeks to modify the controversial 40% excise Cadillac Tax. In 2020, the tax threshold is estimated to be approximately $10,800 for single plans and $29,100 for family plans. However, another change would address regional cost variances by tying the threshold to average marketplace “gold” plan in the states… [Read More]

Learning from the Failure of Health Republic

Flag and Stethoscope

On Wednesday, in my role as the legislative chair for the New York State Association of Health Underwriters (NYSAHU), I was invited to participate in a roundtable discussion which included the members of the NYS Senate Standing Health and Insurance Committees chaired by Senators Hannon and Seward, the head NYS regulator, the head of the… [Read More]

More Bad News for Obamacare

obamacare

Last Thursday, for the first time, the U.S. Senate passed legislation to repeal the major provisions of the Affordable Care Act. The 52-47 vote marks the first time the Senate passed a stand-alone measure to repeal President Obama’s signature legislation. The House will need to approve the amended bill, which would eliminate the individual mandate… [Read More]

Another Change to ACA: States Can Decide on Small Group Expansion

new york state, universal healthcare

Last night, President Obama signed into law the PACE Act. Passed by both the House and Senate with unanimous consent, this law repeals the mandated small group expansion from groups of up to 50 employees, to groups of up to 100 employees – which was to go in to effect on January 1, 2016. States… [Read More]

Finally, the ACA is Getting “Improved”

health policy

Whether one supports the ACA or vehemently opposes it, until recently it was nearly impossible to find any bipartisan consensus on ways to modify it. Republicans were hell-bent on a wholesale demolition of the law and Democrats were stubbornly opposed to any changes, no matter how sensible they may be. Well it appears the tide… [Read More]

The New Media Focus Is Pharmacy – Can Regulators Keep Up?  How Should Employers Protect Themselves? 

Drug Cost  Specialty Pharmacy

Turing Pharmaceuticals – the vilified hedge fund-owned prescription drug peddler that increased the cost of their 62-year-old drug from $13.50 to $750 per tablet overnight – has raised new cries for the legislative involvement in pharmaceutical costs which I have been writing about for a while (see related posts here, here and here). A recent Reuters study… [Read More]

1094/1095 Reporting is Getting Legislative Attention

Capital

Before its summer recess last week, a bill was introduced to the Senate that would impact the employer healthcare coverage reporting which is scheduled to start this year. The bill, which is a companion to a similar House bill, has bipartisan support. Patterned after other ACA actions, the legislation would delay mandatory reporting requirements and… [Read More]

Health Coverage Tax Credit Adds One More Consideration for Employers

Reshaping Healthcare in the United States

We have spent a lot of time discussing the implications that the ACA and recent Supreme Court decisions have had on healthcare coverage for Americans – and on benefits and communication strategy for employers. But the complexity is ramping up everywhere. One more thing to consider: the recent reinstatement of the Health Coverage Tax Credit… [Read More]

Will the Cadillac Tax Change the Pay or Play Dynamic?

Capital

Last week, I spent a very long day in Washington DC with the National Association of Health Underwriters (NAHU) Principals Council talking about the ACA Excise (formerly “Cadillac”) Tax. Yes, this too, has been relabeled because the tax, as it is drafted, will be touching a lot more than the very richest plans that were… [Read More]