Advocacy News: April 2024

Word from Washington After one year, Medicaid coverage losses during “unwinding” continue to surpass worst fears According to the latest KFF Medicaid Unwinding Enrollment Tracker, more than 21 millionAmericans have lost Medicaid coverage during the first year after states were allowed to resume eligibility verifications following the COVID-19 public health emergency. There remains wide variation […]

Advocacy News: March 2024

facade of building

Word From Washington Federal Agencies Supreme Court Congress State of the States Oregon becomes first state in 2024 to pass protections against copay accumulator adjusters. Oregon Governor Tina Kotek (D) signed legislation unanimously passed by the House and Senate that protects consumers in state-regulated health plans from harmful and discriminatory copay accumulator adjuster programs (CAAPs). […]

Word from Washington: January 2024

On January 16, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services withdrew its appeal in the litigation over HHS’s copay accumulator adjuster regulation. Patient groups including HFA applauded this latest development in the lawsuit.  As a reminder, patient groups led by the HIV + Hepatitis Policy Institute had filed suit against HHS, challenging its 2021 […]

Word from Washington: December 2023

Mid-December, for many people, marked the close of the open enrollment period for health insurance plans that will provide coverage beginning January 1, 2024. Preliminary data shows that enrollment in  Affordable Care Act (ACA) Marketplace coverage during the open enrollment period continued to grow at a record-breaking pace. The federal government projects that over 19 […]

Word from Washington: November 2023

man smiling holding folder

HFA returned to Capitol Hill on Nov. 13 for its tenth annual Patient Fly-in and Congressional reception. Twenty-two community members from 16 different states came to Washington, D.C., for policy and advocacy briefings, followed by meetings on Capitol Hill with 35 Congressional offices.   Advocates asked lawmakers to support the HELP Copays Act (H.R. 830, S. […]

Word from Washington: October 2023

Hemophilia Federation of America and allied patient advocates cheered a Sept. 29 court decision setting aside a federal rule that harms people who rely on copay assistance. The rule at issue permitted health plans to implement so-called “copay accumulator adjuster programs” (CAAPs)—strategies whereby health plans accept copay assistance, but refuse to credit those amounts toward […]

Word from Washington: September 2023

Capitol rooftoop

On Sept. 18, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released final regulations that will make it easier for millions of people who receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) to access help with their Medicare costs, through enrollment in the Medicare Savings Program (MSP).   MSPs are eligibility groups through which a state Medicaid program pays […]

Word from Washington: August 2023

Capitol rooftoop

Advocates are responding to yet another payer-side, cost-saving scheme that harms patient access to medicine. The latest version, the so-called “alternative funding program” (AFP), is a shady strategy pitched to employers that promises to lower health plan spending on specialty drugs such as bleeding disorder products and other expensive medicines. AFP vendors advise employer health […]

Word from Washington: July 2023

July saw mounting coverage losses from the national Medicaid unwinding. As of July 28, nearly four million people have been disenrolled from Medicaid since redeterminations began in April 2023. Three-quarters of that total lost coverage for procedural reasons, i.e., paperwork, and may still be eligible for Medicaid. In response to this dismaying track record:  Also […]