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Alexander is retiring, but he's setting his sights on health care in his last term

December 18, 2018

Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.)—chair of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee—has announced that he will not run for re-election in 2020, and a person familiar with Alexander's thinking says the senator could focus on health care during his last term.

A federal judge struck down the ACA. Here's what you need to know.

December 17, 2018

A federal judge on Friday dealt the Affordable Care Act a major blow, ruling that the entire law, including its coverage expansions, payment models, and patient protections, are unconstitutional. But legal experts and public health officials noted the ruling has no immediate effects and is likely to be appealed.

Appeals court partially lifts block on Trump admin's contraceptive coverage exemptions

December 17, 2018

A federal appeals court partially upheld a ruling blocking a pair of final rules that allow more employers to seek exemptions from the Affordable Care Act's contraceptive coverage rules based on moral or religious grounds, but a lower court ruling will keep a nationwide injunction in place.

In the states: 4,000 mental health providers strike in California, Maine ordered to expand Medicaid in 2019, and more

December 14, 2018

American Health Line rounds up the latest health care news in the states.

Federal exchange plan signups are gaining speed, but still falling behind last year

December 13, 2018

CMS data show about 4.1 million U.S. residents selected federal exchange plans from Nov. 1, the first day of the Affordable Care Act's current open enrollment period, through Dec. 8, including 934,269 people who selected plans during the sixth week of open enrollment.

4.2M US residents could pay $0 for an exchange plan in 2019, analysis finds

December 13, 2018

A Kaiser Family Foundation analysis estimates that about 4.2 million uninsured U.S. residents who qualify for premium subsidies under the Affordable Care Act are eligible to enroll in bonze-level exchange plans that would cost them $0 out of pocket.

House Republicans propose ACA tax delays in year-end tax package

December 13, 2018

Republicans on the House Ways and Means Committee on Monday introduced a year-end tax package that would delay certain taxes called for under the Affordable Care Act, but it is unclear whether the package will advance in the House and Senate.

Meet John O'Brien, Azar's new senior adviser on drug pricing

December 10, 2018

John O'Brien, a former executive at CareFirst Blue Cross Blue Shield, will oversee the Trump administration's implementation of a proposed Medicare Part B drug pricing model intended to bring provider reimbursements in line with prices paid in other countries.

The lag in federal exchange signups, charted

December 10, 2018

CMS data show about 3.2 million U.S. residents selected federal exchange plans from Nov. 1, the first day of the Affordable Care Act's current open enrollment period, through Dec. 1.

CMS finalizes rule on 2018 risk-adjustment payments

December 10, 2018

CMS under a new rule will "adopt the risk adjustment methodology that HHS previously established for the 2018 benefit year," which bases such payments on statewide average premiums.

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