Translating The Health Law Into Reality One Regulation At A Time
Part of implementing the health law includes replacing jargon in health insurance policies with plain English. Meanwhile, the release of a federal mental health parity rule is held up to coordinate it with the overhaul.
St. Louis Beacon: Plain English Will Replace Jargon In Health Insurance Policy
[Dr. Karen Edison and Stanton Hudson of the Center for Health Policy at the University of Missouri at Columbia] are pleased by the Department of Health and Human Services' recent decision to require insurers to provide consumers with clear and understandable summaries of what's covered in their health plans. But both add that this federal effort should be regarded as a first step. ... Edison says the group needing the most help is the roughly 20 percent of the population that is functionally illiterate (Joiner, 3/14).
Earlier, related KHN story: Medicare Combats Fraud With Billing Statements That Beneficiaries Can Understand (Jaffe, 3/7).
CQ HealthBeat: Mental Health Parity Rule Hold-Up Attributed to Inclusion In Health Care Law
Health and Human Services officials haven't issued final regulations for mental health parity because they want the requirements for such coverage to be part of the health care law implementation, the agency's Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation Sherry Glied said Wednesday. "I don't think it's a hold-up around parity,"’ Glied said. Implementing the health care law includes "the challenge of building this regulatory infrastructure around the insurance industry that should incorporate [mental health benefits]" (Bristol, 3/14).