First Edition: October 22, 2010
Today's headlines detail the National Association of Insurance Commissioners vote on recommendations regarding a key provision of the health law.
State Regulators Recommend New Health Insurance Rules
Kaiser Health News staff writer Julie Appleby reports: "Insurance regulators unanimously recommended controversial rules Thursday governing how much insurers must spend on patients' medical care without adopting any of several last-minute amendments some consumer advocates had feared would gut key provisions" (Kaiser Health News).
Daschle On Health Law: Defunding Is 'A Serious Threat'
Tom Daschle, the former Senate Majority Leader and a senior, informal, advisor to President Obama during the health debate has been writing and talking about how the law got passed. In his new book, "Getting It Done," Daschle talks about the challenges facing the administration now, including walking the line between the "pragmatic and idealistic" and about how to respond to the many requests for waivers from complying with the law. He recently spoke with KFF's Jackie Judd (Kaiser Health News). Watch the video or listen to the audio.
States Affirm Tough Limits On Insurers' Use Of Dollars
State insurance commissioners on Thursday unanimously endorsed tough new standards that would require many health insurance companies to spend more of each premium dollar for the benefit of consumers (The New York Times).
State Regulators Back Plan To Require Health Insurers To Spend At Least 80% Of Premiums On Medical Care
Over the protests of the insurance industry, state insurance regulators meeting Thursday endorsed a proposed federal regulation that would guarantee that a certain portion of health insurance premiums is spent on medical care (Los Angeles Times).
State Regulators Finalize Recommendations On Insurers' 'Medical Loss Ratio'
State insurance regulators finalized their recommendations to the Obama administration Thursday on how to implement a key provision of the new health-care law, largely favoring the views of consumer advocates over those advanced by the insurance industry (The Washington Post).
Insurance Brokers Lose Out In Final NAIC Recommendations
Among the proposed amendments that didn't make the final rules was a proposal to remove insurance-broker commissions from the administrative cost bucket. You can see why brokers would be nervous about this issue - if insurers are trying to push their administrative costs below those thresholds to avoid having to pay rebates, commissions will likely be squeezed (The Wall Street Journal's Health Blog).
State Health Officials Approve Key Reform Plan
State insurance commissioners on Thursday approved rules shaping how insurance companies will have to account for their medical spending beginning next year, a key piece of the health care overhaul (Politico).
Regulators Vote On Key Health-Care Issue
Voting on a key issue in the federal health-care overhaul, state insurance regulators finalized a proposal Thursday that disappointed health insurers but was applauded by the Obama administration and consumer advocates (The Wall Street Journal).
Association OKs New Insurance Rule Recommendations
State insurance commissioners agreed to a framework for regulations for medical loss ratios, an obscure statistic that will become noteworthy to consumers after next year because it might lead to rebates (The Associated Press).
AP-GfK Poll: Likely Voters Split On Repealing Health Care Law Or Expanding It To Do More
First it was President Barack Obama's health care overhaul that divided the nation. Now it's the Republican cry for repeal (The Associated Press).
Health Care Attacks Lead Ad Bombardment
Political ads are flooding the airwaves and newspapers and websites, big and small, are trying to keep up. Today we find reviews of tax attacks, Social Security pledges, and stimulus effects (The Washington Post's 44 Politics and Policy Blog).
US Agents Make Arrests In Massive Medicare Fraud Case In Florida
Federal agents in a health-care-fraud strike force moved on Thursday in Miami to shut down a massive Medicare fraud operation that allegedly netted $83 million in illicit proceeds since 2003 (The Christian Science Monitor).
Diabetes May Affect As Many As 1 In 3 Americans By 2050
The future of diabetes in America looks bleak, according to a new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report out today, with cases projected to double, even triple, by 2050 (USA Today).
If You Don't Get The New Health Care Law, At Least You Can Laugh About It
OK, no one said implementing the new health law was gonna be easy. Or, as the clueless and nameless health care executive says in the cartoon video below which has gone viral in health policy circles, "This sounds way harder than I expected" (NPR).
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