State Health Policy Blog

The Trump Administration’s effort to address drug prices surfaced unexpectedly in the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)’s recently issued proposed annual rule that regulates state health insurance markets, including coverage sold through the Affordable Care Act (ACA) marketplaces. The proposal encourages the use of generic drugs over brand-name drugs by both health plans and enrollees […]

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  • State Health Policy Blog

    CMS Releases State Funding to Improve Integrated Care for Children and Pregnant and Postpartum Women Enrolled in Medicaid and CHIP

    Last week, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released two highly anticipated initiatives — the Maternal Opioid Misuse (MOM) Model and the Integrated Care for Kids (InCK) Model — which will provide multi-year funding to states to improve integrated care for maternal and child health populations enrolled in Medicaid and the Children’s Health […]

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    How Hawaii Fights the Flu: Pop-up Vaccination Clinics and State Agency Collaboration

    States are using creative and collaborative methods to increase flu immunization rates after 185 children died from influenza during the 2017-2018 season — the highest toll reported since the 2009 flu pandemic. The health and economic toll of last season’s flu outbreak in children nationwide included more than 48,000 hospitalizations and 6.5 million medical visits. […]

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    Guest Blog: Massachusetts Report Recommends More Health Care Price Transparency and Simpler Payment Methods

    Guest Blog: Massachusetts Report Recommends More Health Care Price Transparency and Simpler Payment Methods

    Amara Azubuike and Sandra Wolitzky are assistant attorneys general in the Massachusetts Office of the Attorney General. A new report released in October 2018 by Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey finds that complicated and varied methods used to determine health care payment rates contribute to administrative cost increases and make it difficult for market participants […]

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  • State Health Policy Blog
    Tackling the Opioid Crisis: What State Strategies Are Working?

    Tackling the Opioid Crisis: What State Strategies Are Working?

    Among the many issues  confronting new state governors and their administrations, the opioid crisis may be one of the most urgent and complex, and may leave the most devastating legacy. Opioids kill 130 Americans every day. For state policy makers, the ripple effect of the crisis reaches beyond health care systems to impact public safety […]

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  • State Health Policy Blog
    Deadline Looms for State Comments on Fed’s Latest Insurance Rules

    Deadline Looms for State Comments on Fed’s Latest Insurance Rules

    After a delay, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has issued its proposed annual rule regulating state health insurance markets, including coverage sold through the Affordable Care Act (ACA) marketplaces. View NASHP’s chart highlighting the rule’s provisions that impact states here. The deadline to submit comments on the rule is Feb. 19, 2019. […]

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  • State Health Policy Blog
    New Tools Help States Document Rx Costs and Identify Potential Savings

    New Tools Help States Document Rx Costs and Identify Potential Savings

    Just how much are states spending on prescription drugs? And, which drugs account for their greatest expense? As state policymakers grapple with solutions to the problem of rising drug costs, officials are performing research to  provide critical evidence and tools needed to inform policy. Two recent state efforts to document their prescription drug costs may […]

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  • State Health Policy Blog
    As State Legislatures Convene, Lawmakers Quickly Submit Bills to Curb Prescription Prices

    As State Legislatures Convene, Lawmakers Quickly Submit Bills to Curb Prescription Prices

    One week into the 2019 legislative season, lawmakers from 11 states have already submitted 30 bills to address the rising cost of prescription drugs. The bills submitted to date seek to implement wholesale drug importation programs, increase pharmaceutical pricing transparency, and regulate pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs), along with other drug cost containment initiatives. Last year, […]

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  • State Health Policy Blog

    Federal Rule Delay Impacts States’ and Insurers’ 2020 Plans

    State regulators are already working to develop guidance and rules that will determine health insurance plans’ benefits and costs in 2020. However, states lack critical information to make updated calculations because the federal government has not yet released its 2020 Actuarial Value (AV) Calculator. Why is the AV calculator important? AV is used to sort […]

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    January 15, 2019 | Filed under: Front Page, Insurance Exchanges, State Health Policy Blog

  • State Health Policy Blog
    State Reinsurance Programs Lower Premiums and Stabilize Markets — Oregon and Maryland Show How

    State Reinsurance Programs Lower Premiums and Stabilize Markets — Oregon and Maryland Show How

    Across the nation, in response to rising health insurance premiums and unsettled markets, a growing number of states are using reinsurance programs to reduce premiums and stabilize jittery markets. What is reinsurance? A reinsurance program provides funds to health insurers to offset the costs of covering consumers with high medical costs. Generally, reinsurance funds become […]

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    January 14, 2019 | Filed under: Front Page, State Health Policy Blog