Expert Perspectives

Jan 12, 2017 

New Brief Features Opportunities to Address Population Health Goals through Jointly Employed Measurement and Accountability Tools

As states gear up to consider their new budgets, we should expect palpable anxiety about health care spending. States have spent more and more on health care over the years and will be called to do so again. That increased spending hasn’t automatically translated into better health and well-being, though. In fact, many policymakers express concerns that medical inflation crowds out investments in other areas like education, housing, and transportation that tend to prevent issues from escalating into health problems.

Dec 5, 2016 

New Brief Highlights Innovative Strategies for Integrating Health Care and Social Services

Mounting evidence shows progress toward turning the promise of better, more affordable health care into reality. Health reform efforts in recent years have been instrumental in reforming insurance practices, reducing the uninsured rate by a third, and – most exciting for those who work hand-in-glove with state partners – engaging stakeholders across industry and throughout government to forge new partnerships to deliver health care differently.

Nov 3, 2016 

1332 Waivers Resource Library

The State Network serves as a resource for states interested in Section 1332 waivers, also known as State Innovation Waivers, which are shaping up to be an important opportunity for states reaching toward the goal of expanded coverage. We’ll continue to provide analysis and other materials, updating this post as more becomes available.

Aug 5, 2016 

New Report Looks at 1332 Process

Recently, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a letter that it sent to Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah regarding Section 1332 Waivers, also known as State Innovation Waivers. These waivers, authorized under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), permit the federal Departments of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Treasury to waive certain aspects of the ACA upon a state’s request. The GAO was asked for information on the status of the waiver review and approval process, and talked to many stakeholders (federal and state officials and advocates) in preparing its response.

Jan 22, 2016 

Should States Reconsider Their Exchange Models?

The third open enrollment period is coming to an end and the lack of drama may signal an opportune time for states to reassess the exchange model they are using. Certainly, eligibility determination and plan enrollment remain critical. But with many of the kinks and transitions worked out, states have an opportunity to pursue additional policy goals like improving customer service, increasing health plan competition, controlling administrative costs, and promoting delivery system transformation.

Dec 11, 2015 

New Federal Guidance on Section 1332 Waivers – What does it say and what might it mean

Today, the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Treasury released guidance on Section 1332 waivers, also known as State Innovation Waivers. The guidance focuses specifically on how the federal government will assess a proposal’s effect on the four guardrails, or general limits, on what the impact of a waiver would be on affordability, coverage levels, comprehensiveness of coverage and the federal deficit. The guidance also discusses the interaction of different programs, including Section 1115 waiver proposals on a Section 1332 application budget, and operational considerations for the federally-facilitated marketplace (FFM) and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

Oct 30, 2015 

What to Expect from Open Enrollment 2015-2016

This Sunday, November 1, marks the start of the third annual Open Enrollment period for health coverage under the Affordable Care Act. Eligible Americans can shop for plans that will take effect on January 1, 2016. For most, this means the annual trip to healthcare.gov to review options and update personal information. What can be expected from this year’s open enrollment – the shortest period so far?

Jul 27, 2015 

New resource from CMS on 1332 waivers

Last week, CMS published a new resource hub devoted to 1332 waivers containing links to regulations, FAQs, and fact sheets, as well as promise to issue more guidance “as additional questions and issues arise.” Also announced on the new page: the official email address for questions and completed applications is stateinnovationwaivers@cms.hhs.gov.

Jun 25, 2015 

Supreme Court upholds key provision of the ACA

Thanks to today’s Supreme Court ruling, the Affordable Care Act and its promise to help Americans obtain affordable health coverage are here to stay. By a vote of 6-3, the majority held that Congressional intent was clear: qualified residents of all states, no matter what type of exchange they enroll in, are entitled to receive tax credits to help them afford health insurance.