In 2019, the Washington legislature enacted a bill requiring insurers on the state’s health insurance exchange to offer plans with standardized benefit designs, beginning in 2021. Colorado and Maryland are considering similar requirements. As these and other states consider the option of standardized health plans, they can benefit from the experiences of California, the District of Columbia (D.C.), Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York, Oregon, and Vermont, all of which require insurers to offer standardized benefit designs. This Expert Perspective outlines benefits and risks of plan standardization, and raises critical questions that states will need to consider, and offers a decision roadmap for states implementing a standardized benefit design requirement.
Applicability of All-Payer Claims Databases for Rate Review and Other Regulatory Functions
Wakely Consulting Group – Julia Lerche and Ross Winkelman
All-payer claims databases (APCDs) collect and compile medical, pharmacy, and sometimes dental claims, eligibility, and provider files from public and private payers. APCDs are currently being used for a variety of functions, including population health analysis, comparative analysis of provider and facility quality, cost management for Medicaid and other public programs, support for provider payment reform initiatives, and consumer transparency tools. This issue brief, prepared by Wakely Consulting Group, builds on conversations with a number of states at the State Network All-Payer Claims Database Small Group Convening in January 2014, and is intended to explain the potential uses of APCDs for rate review and other regulatory functions. It includes descriptions of possible uses for APCDs and ranks the level of effort necessary to use an APCD for those purposes, along with the relative value of doing so.