Health Care Reform Dashboard

Health Care Reform Dashboard

Charting Developments with the
Affordable Care Act and Beyond

Health Plans

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Reminder: Reporting Requirement for Health Care Costs One Month Away

Health plan sponsors and health insurers will need to report prescription drug and other health plan costs (RxDC reporting) for 2022 by June 1, 2023. Unlike the RxDC reporting requirements for 2020 and 2021, this deadline is not expected to be delayed. Plan sponsors and insurers will benefit from the relaxation of some of the [&hellip… Continue Reading »

FAQs Provide Guidance on Preventive Care

Summary The Departments of Labor, the Treasury, and Health and Human Services have jointly issued FAQs that address the requirement to cover the full cost of certain preventive care services in view of the recent ruling in Braidwood v. Bacerra that invalidated some of those requirements. The Upshot The Bottom Line Given that the Biden Administration expects to challenge [&hellip… Continue Reading »

Court Invalidates Certain Preventive Care Requirements

Summary Health plans and insurance policies may no longer be required to cover the full cost of preventive care that carries an A or B rating by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF), following a recent ruling by a federal district court in Texas. The Upshot The Bottom Line Health plans and insurers may [&hellip… Continue Reading »

Strike Two: Court Again Invalidates No Surprises Procedure

Summary The U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Texas vacated certain provisions of the No Surprises regulations that it found inappropriately placed a “thumb on the scale,” and limited the discretion of arbitrators. The Upshot The Bottom Line The court decision provides another victory to out-of-network providers under the No Surprises rules, but it may [&hellip… Continue Reading »

Reviewing the Welfare Plan Rules Under the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021

Summary The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, (CAA) and transparency regulations introduced major changes to health benefit plans. These changes continue to evolve with some requirements just now taking effect. The Upshot The Bottom Line The CAA introduced requirements that affect how much plans must pay in certain surprise situations, how plans must document compliance with [&hellip… Continue Reading »

IRS Finalizes Affordable Care Act Reporting Relief

Since the inception of the annual reporting requirements under the Affordable Care Act for Forms 1094 and 1095, the IRS has been annually extending the deadline for employers to distribute those reports to individuals. In line with prior guidance, the IRS has now issued final regulations that provide for a permanent, automatic 30-day reporting deadline [&hellip… Continue Reading »

Last-Minute Reprieve for HSA-Compatible Telehealth Benefits

With little time to spare before the provisions expired, Congress has extended, and President Biden is set to sign into law, an important safe harbor that allows plan sponsors to continue offering reduced-cost telehealth services without disrupting the ability to contribute to health savings accounts (HSAs). The extension is part of the $1.7 trillion Consolidated [&hellip… Continue Reading »

Holiday Relief for Reporting Requirements

In a new set of Frequently Asked Questions, the U.S. Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and the Treasury provide significant relief to health plan sponsors and insurers seeking to report on expenditures for prescription drugs and other health care items and services in compliance with the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021. The new guidance has [&hellip… Continue Reading »

New Wiretap Cases Target Hospitals Using Meta Pixel

As we discussed in a recent webcast, there has been a surge in litigation focused on companies’ use of Meta Pixel, which is tracking code that enables the sharing of user online activity with Facebook.  Recent litigation has alleged that use of Meta Pixel with online videos violates the Video Privacy Protection Act (VPPA).  An even [&hellip… Continue Reading »

Dispute Resolution Process is Modified Under the CAA’s No Surprise Billing Rules

Summary The Departments of Labor, Treasury, and Health & Human Services have finalized regulations regarding the dispute resolution process implemented under the No Surprise Billing Rules in the Consolidated Appropriations Act. The Departments also have issued important FAQ guidance that addresses many other elements of the No Surprise Billing Rules. The Upshot The new final [&hellip… Continue Reading »

Back and Forth to the Future: HHS Issues Proposed Rules on Nondiscrimination

Summary The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has issued proposed regulations under the nondiscrimination provisions of Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The proposed rules restore and augment a number of the nondiscrimination requirements in regulations that were published in 2016, but later stripped away in rules published in 2020. The [&hellip… Continue Reading »

The Element of Surprise – The No Surprises Rules Become a Little Less Predictable

In a Memorandum Opinion and Order issued last week, a federal judge in the Eastern District of Texas vacated significant provisions in the regulations under the No Surprises Act. The order addresses the independent dispute resolution (IDR) process that health plans or providers may initiate to resolve differences about how much a health plan should pay for out-of-network [&hellip… Continue Reading »

The CAA Prescription Drug Benefit Reporting Requirement

Summary The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 (CAA) requires group health plans and health insurers to submit information regarding the costs of prescription drug costs and other health care services each year to the federal government. This is the ninth briefing in Ballard Spahr’s series on the CAA and health transparency regulations. It was originally published [&hellip… Continue Reading »

The CAA’s New Rules for Health Care Provider Directories

Summary The Consolidated Appropriations Act (CAA) requires each group health plan and health insurer with a network of providers to maintain a database on a public website that lists the name, address, specialty, telephone number, and digital contact information for each provider that directly or indirectly participates in the network. These new standards are effective [&hellip… Continue Reading »

Provider’s Claims for COVID-19 Screening Charges Move Forward

Addressing motions to dismiss, a district court in Texas has found that a provider may proceed with its lawsuit to recover the full amount of its charges for COVID-19 diagnostic testing under the FFCRA and CARES Act from an insurer. The FFCRA and CARES Act require health plans and insurers to pay the amount published by a [&hellip… Continue Reading »

The CAA’s New Identification Card Requirements

Summary To help individuals better understand the costs they will bear for medical care, the Consolidated Appropriations Act (CAA) requires health plan ID cards to include clear information about deductibles and out-of-pocket maximum limitations as well as a telephone number and website address where enrollees can obtain additional information about their coverage. This is the [&hellip… Continue Reading »

Understanding the New Continuity of Care Rule

Summary Under a new rule introduced by the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 (CAA), a health plan or insurer must offer an enrollee the opportunity to elect a transitional period of continued care with a provider whose participation in the applicable network ends while the enrollee is in a course of treatment for certain medical conditions. [&hellip… Continue Reading »

Report Highlights Expanded Enforcement of Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act

Summary The Departments of the Treasury, Labor, and Health and Human Services jointly issued a report to Congress, fulfilling obligations that they have with regard to the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act (MHPAEA) and Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 (CAA). The report offers valuable insight into the departments’ approach to enforcing the MHPAEA and, [&hellip… Continue Reading »

Prohibition Against Gag Clauses

Summary Health plan vendors sometimes impose contractual restrictions on the disclosure of data that they consider to be confidential or proprietary. A number of new rules aim to foster transparency and require disclosure of pricing and other information that might otherwise be subject to those restrictions. The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 (CAA) prohibits a health [&hellip… Continue Reading »

Health Plan Fiduciaries Must Solicit Information From Brokers and Consultants

Summary The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 (CAA) requires the disclosure of information to ensure that brokers and certain consultants receive no more than reasonable compensation for their services. This is the fourth briefing in Ballard Spahr’s series on the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 (CAA) and transparency regulations. It was originally was published in November 2021. [&hellip… Continue Reading »

Further IRS Extensions and Waivers to Affordable Rental Housing Projects as COVID-19 Persists

Summary The IRS has extended certain deadlines relating to affordable housing projects with Low Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC) under Section 42 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended (the Code) or financed with tax-exempt private activity bonds under Section 142(d) of the Code. The Upshot While COVID-19 disruptions continue, owners, operators, issuers, and state [&hellip… Continue Reading »

Understanding the New Health Care Transparency Requirements

Summary New rules require group health plans and insurers to disclose pricing information in three phases. This is the third briefing in Ballard Spahr’s series on the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 (CAA) and transparency regulations. It was originally published in November 2021. The first installment addressed the new No Surprises Rules. The second focused on Understanding the [&hellip… Continue Reading »

DHHS Approves Updates to Preventive Items and Services to be Covered Without Cost-Sharing

Revisions to preventive care and screening guidelines will require health plans and health insurance policies to provide 100 percent coverage for additional services for women, adolescents, children, and infants, following an update issued by the Health Resources Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). The HRSA update modifies certain [&hellip… Continue Reading »