Lobbyists Turn Focus To How Health Law Will Be Regulated
"Now that the health care bill is law, an array of groups -- representing doctors, insurers, small businesses and others -- have switched to their post-passage game plans. Among their top goals: Helping shape the all-important regulations being written by the Obama administration," according to Kaiser Health News/The Washington Post. Reporters talked with 8 leading lobbying groups about their priorities.
For instance, the National Governors Association wants governors to have the authority to experiment independently and wants guidance how state-run "high-risk pools" should offer coverage to people currently uninsured. Kathleen Nolan, the group's health division director says, "Even as we speak, states are having to make decisions about this, but there's very little information about how the (new program) will work and who is on the hook for it" (Appleby, Carey and Galewitz, 5/14).
The Washington Post also reports on the complicated business of writing rules on "the new requirement that health insurers use at least 80 or 85 percent of their premium dollars to pay medical bills or otherwise improve consumers' health."
"In comments submitted to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), which is helping the government translate the new requirement into detailed rules, members of the industry have asked for permission to count a wide range of expenses. The BlueCross BlueShield Association, for example, has told rulemakers that its efforts to improve health quality include 'reducing inappropriate and sometimes potentially harmful care'" (Hilzenrath, 5/13).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.