IRS Issues Guidance On ACA’s Employer Shared Responsibility Provisions

The Internal Revenue Service has issued guidance on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) employer shared responsibility provisions in the form of 23 questions and answers. The employer shared responsibility provisions generally go into effect on Jan. 1, 2014. Employers will use information about the employees they employ during 2013 to determine whether […]

IRS Issues Proposed Regulations On Employers’ Shared Responsibility For Health Coverage Under ACA

  The Internal Revenue Service has released proposed regulations that provide guidance under Code Sec. 4980H with respect to an employer’s shared responsibility for employee health coverage under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA). Code Sec. 4980H is effective for months beginning after Dec. 31, 2013. The proposed regulations affect only “applicable large […]

Health Care Costs Projected To Increase At A Slower Rate In 2013: Buck Consultants

Projected cost increases for all types of medical plans are anticipated to be down by between 0.2 and 0.6 percent through the first half of 2013, according to a recent survey from Buck Consultants. This year was the first time since 2001 that Buck’s survey indicated projected cost increases less than 10 percent for any […]

U.S. Chamber of Commerce Requests That HHS Extend Comment Periods For Three Proposed Rules Implementing ACA

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has requested that the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) extend the 30-day comment periods for three proposed rules implementing provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA). The Chamber of Commerce asserted in letters to the HHS that the proposed rules have “extremely short comment periods,” […]

Majority Of Americans Live In States Where Health Insurance Premiums Are 20 Percent Or More Of Median Income

The majority (80 percent) of working-age Americans live in states where premiums are 20 percent or more of median income, according to a recent report from the Commonwealth Fund. The report, State Trends in Premiums and Deductibles, 2003–2011: Eroding Protection and Rising Costs Underscore Need for Action, also found that average premiums for employer-sponsored family […]

Prevention Is Key To Reducing Health Care Costs For All Employees, Even Those With Chronic Conditions

  Cost savings associated with health risk reduction begin accumulating in as little as one year, particularly for those with chronic conditions, according to a recent study from StayWell Health Management and Towers Watson. Furthermore, the study, Association Between Changes in Health Risk Status and Changes in Future Health Care Costs: A Multiemployer Study, found […]

Consumers Saw Nearly $1.5 Billion Financial Benefit From ACA’s Medical Loss Ratio Requirement In 2011

Consumers saw nearly $1.5 billion in insurer rebates and overhead cost savings in 2011, due to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) medical loss ratio provision requiring health insurers to spend at least 80 percent of premium dollars on health care or quality improvement activities or pay a rebate to their customers, according […]

Majority Of U.S. Employers Likely To Provide Health Coverage In 2014

A majority of U.S. employers—84 percent—are very likely or definitely will continue to provide employer-sponsored health insurance for all full-time employees when the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA)-mandated exchanges open in 2014, according to the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans’ 2012 Post-Election Survey. “With President Obama’s re-election confirming that the ACA will […]

HHS Details Accepted De-Identification Methods For PHI

  The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has issued guidance, primarily in a question-and-answer format, on the methods and approaches necessary to achieve de-identification of protected health information (PHI) in accordance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA). The guidance on the de-identification of PHI reflects input received from […]

IRS Releases Final Regulations On Fees For Health Insurers To Fund Patient Center

  The Internal Revenue Service has issued final regulations implementing and providing guidance on certain fees imposed by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA). New Code Secs. 4375 through 4377 impose fees on two groups of insurers. The first group comprises issuers of accident and health insurance policies issued to U.S. residents, including […]