Health Care

Trump Administration Halts Payments Under Obamacare Program

Trump Administration Halts Payments Under Obamacare Program”

The Trump administration said Saturday that it is temporarily halting billions of dollars of payments created to help insurers meet the Affordable Care Act requirement that they provide coverage regardless of whether a person is healthy or sick.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), which administers ACA programs, said on Saturday that months-old conflicting court rulings related to the risk adjustment formula prevent them from making payments. Initially, the decision could affect $10.4 billion in payments tied to the 2017 benefit year, .

The announcement came as insurers were awaiting an annual report that usually comes at the end of June, informing them of whether they owe money into the risk adjustment program or will be paid out for the previous year.

The Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, whose members are a mainstay of Affordable Care Act coverage said it was "extremely disappointed" with the administration's action.

Risk adjustment is a key aspect of market stabilization under the ACA, also known as Obamacare. "As a result of this litigation, billions of dollars in risk adjustment payments and collections are now on hold", CMS administrator Seema Verma reportedly said in a statement.

In the meantime, some health insurers are potentially out billions of dollars. The CMS has appealed the decision, particularly because a MA court upheld such payments.

Similarly, a year ago the Trump administration ended Obamacare's cost-sharing reduction payments to health insurers.

"When the rules of the game change after the fact - insurers don't necessarily see the federal government as a particularly reliable partner right now", Levitt says.

The administration argued in its announcement that its hands were tied by conflicting court rulings in New Mexico and MA.

The agency said it had no choice after a U.S. District Court in New Mexico said the payments are invalid, due to the formula used to make them.

"An effective risk adjustment program is crucial to the sound operation of a health insurance marketplace in which individuals, families and small businesses with health needs have access to more affordable, high-quality coverage", said Bill Wehrle, Kaiser Permanente vice president of health insurance exchanges, in a statement.

Insurance companies responded quickly on Saturday with their disapproval.

Since then, it has taken administrative steps to weaken the law, including the removal of the individual mandate - which required everyone to purchase health insurance.

America's Health Insurance Plans, the main health insurance industry trade group, said in a statement that it is "very discouraged" by the Trump administration's decision to freeze payments.



Like this

loading...
loading...

Latest


10 July 2018
Arsenal complete move for Sampdoria midfielder Lucas Torreira
Personal terms weren't an issue and the club have now confirmed on Arsenal .com that Torreira has joined the club on a long-term contract.

10 July 2018
Bethlehem man survived DE crash that killed father, four daughters
A community has come together to mourn five family members killed in a crash on Route 1 in Townsend, Delaware . The thing that she doesn't know is that my brother and two of the girls are unrecognizable (at the morgue)".

10 July 2018
Netflix's 'smart downloads' cue up your next offline episode automatically
Netflix is rolling out a new " smart downloads " feature created to make offline viewing just a little bit easier. Called " smart downloads ", the tool is meant to help users manage the Netflix content on their devices.

10 July 2018
Jean Lonchak Danylko killed after a helicopter crashes into her condo
The Federal Aviation Administration tweeted that Aviation Safety Inspectors arrived in Williamsburg around 7:30 Sunday evening. The College of William and Mary said the incident happened near Dillard Complex and that people should avoid the area.

10 July 2018
Sacha Baron Cohen is coming for Donald Trump and we can't wait
Trump , the Fourth of July video begins with footage of Trump talking about Cohen, referring to him as a "third-grade character". The Borat and Ali G star trolled President Donald Trump in a cryptic video posted to his Twitter page Wednesday morning.

10 July 2018
This is what Meghan Markle wore to her first royal christening
THE Duke and Duchess of Sussex will arrive in Dublin today for their first official royal engagement overseas as a married couple.

10 July 2018
UK PM May seeks unity amid chaos over Brexit plans
He went on to explain how the current political turmoil in Britain will work to the EU's advantage in Brexit negotiations. Jacob Rees-Mogg, who leads a bloc of Brexit-supporting Conservative MPs in Parliament, urged May to give up on the plan.

10 July 2018
Projecting Final Matchup Before 1st Semi-Final Game
While England literarily strolled through their match against Sweden, they look favoured to win the highly anticipated match. Yet it is England's creative, dynamic and intelligent midfield that will need to be on the top of its game against Croatia .

10 July 2018
Rockets Determined to Sign Carmelo Anthony
Many teams have been rumored to be interested, with the Los Angeles Lakers and Houston Rockets on top of the list. Carmelo Anthony is now being pursued by the Houston Rockets .

10 July 2018
Lando Calrissian Will Return For STAR WARS: EPISODE IX
Donald Glover recently took on the younger version of the role in the latest franchise spin-off Solo: A Star Wars Story . But now Williams will don Lando's fabulous cape again to reprise the role in Episode 9 .