POLICY BRIEFINGS


Republican Governors Seek Medicaid Flexibility


The health care task force of the Republican Governors Public Policy Committee issued a report urging the federal government to give states greater control over Medicaid program design and spending, including greater flexibility to make use of managed care, eliminating the mandatory benefit structure so that states can design their own benefits and requiring greater beneficiary cost sharing.  They maintain that increasing Medicaid costs are a significant threat to state budgets and that states are not free to modify their programs in ways that best meet their needs.  House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton said that the report will be looked at for guidance when the committee moves forward on Medicaid issues.


Medical Privacy Gives Standing to PPACA Challenge


In a challenge to the PPACA individual mandate, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi ruled that a plaintiff’s right to medical privacy, which might be breached by the PPACA requirement to disclose information to private health insurers, is sufficient means to give the plaintiff standing to challenge the law.


New Grants for Public Health


HHS announced the award of $40 million in grants to state, local, tribal and territorial health departments to improve their public health programs and infrastructure.


Proposed Medicare Coverage for Obesity


CMS issued a proposed decision memorandum which would allow for Medicare Part A and B coverage of intensive behavioral therapy for obesity.


Final Rules on E-Prescribing Incentives


CMS issued a final rule, effective in 30 days, which amends the Medicare electronic prescribing incentive program (eRx) which is designed to encourage physicians and other health care professionals to use e-prescribing technology.  Certain hardship exemptions were granted to ease the requirements.


Republicans to Seek Repeal of PPACA Grandfather Regulations


House Majority Leader Eric Cantor announced that, as part of the Republican jobs agenda, House Republicans plan to move legislation in November or December to repeal the PPACA restrictions on grandfathered health plans.  They contend that the rules are a hindrance to job creation.



September 6, 2011: | Page 1 Page 2

SERVICES




BRIEFING ARCHIVE


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