April 25th, 2013
April 2013 has been a quiet month for new Affordable Care Act rules and guidance. Activity to implement the ACA, of course, is moving full speed ahead at the federal level as efforts continue to implement the federal exchange and to gear up for federal enforcement of the market reforms in a number of states. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is in the process of holding stakeholder calls in every state where a federal exchange (now called a “marketplace”) will be established. It is also locating navigator programs, signing up insurers, and preparing for the October 1, 2013 beginning of open enrollment. The states have also been very active, either trying to implement their own state exchanges and the 2014 ACA market reforms or doing everything they can dream up to keep implementation from moving ahead.
Final rules have been issued governing the exchanges, the 2014 market reforms, the premium tax credits, and the premium stabilization programs, while guidance has been issued on the federal exchanges and the navigator program. Final rules on Medicaid eligibility and appeals are expected shortly. A public hearing was held on April 23, 2013 regarding the proposed employer responsibility regulations, while another will be held on May 29, 2013 reviewing proposed individual responsibility regulations. Final rules will follow in due course. In sum, implementation is progressing, although a lot of ground must be covered between now and 2014.Read the rest of this entry »