Essential Benefits, Child-Only Policies Among Health Overhaul Issues Gaining Attention
News outlets report on developments related to the implementation of these health law provisions.
Connecticut Mirror: Federal Health Reform Adds A New Wrinkle to Mandate Debate
Under the law, the federal government will define a set of "essential benefits" that must be included in health plans sold in the exchange, the marketplace for private insurance that will open by 2014. States that mandate benefits beyond what the federal government deems "essential" will have to pay the cost of covering those benefits if they are required for plans sold in the exchange. ... The Connecticut Insurance Department has urged lawmakers to consider the potential state cost as they contemplate creating new mandates (Becker, 2/7).
McClatchy/The Miami Herald: As Health Care Law Rolls Out, Many Insurers Drop Child-Only Policies
As arguments about the constitutionality of health care reform reverberate through courtrooms in Florida and across the nation, two provisions that have already kicked in are sparking opposite reactions from insurers. The requirement that children under 19 be granted insurance regardless of preexisting conditions has caused Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida and many other insurers to stop offering child-only coverage. But the provision requiring many employers to insure adult children up to age 26 through their parents' plans has glided into practice with virtually no opposition because health care consultants, insurance companies and major employers believe cost increases will be minimal and benefits widespread (Dorschner, 2/8).