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Capitol Correspondence - 06.18.17

CMS Issues RFI on Reducing Regulatory Burdens of ACA

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On June 12, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a Request for Information (RIN 0938-ZB39) seeking recommendations and input from the public on how to create a more flexible, streamlined approach to the regulatory structure of the individual and small group markets. According to CMS’ release announcing the RFI, the goal is to identify and eliminate or change regulations that are outdated, unnecessary, or ineffective; impose costs that exceed benefits; or create inconsistencies that otherwise interfere with regulatory reform initiatives and policies. Comments are due July 12, 2017.

The notice goes on to say:

“The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is looking for feedback on regulations under the ACA to determine whether each rule advances or impedes priorities for stabilizing the individual and small group health insurance markets; empowers patients and promotes consumer choice; enhances affordability; and returns regulatory authority to the states. Regulations under review include Essential Health Benefits and Actuarial Value, among others.

Feedback can include providing input to improve rules, maintain rules, change rules, remove rules, and more. Some areas for specific requested feedback, include:

·         Empowering patients and promoting consumer choice.  What activities would best inform consumers and help them choose a plan that best meets their needs?

·         Enhancing affordability.  What steps can HHS take to enhance the affordability of coverage for individual consumers and small businesses?

·         Protecting individual independence. How can HHS enhance the opportunities of older adults and people with disabilities to participate in their communities and access the supports they need?

Aging and disability community-based organizations and other groups may wish to provide feedback for these populations and their caregivers and/or family members.

The RFI will be open for public comment for 30 days.”