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Word From Washington

Word From Washington: CMS Drops Proposal to Allow Medicare Plans to Limit Coverage of “Protected Class” Drugs

May 17, 2019

  The U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released a final rule yesterday on drug pricing in the Medicare Advantage and Medicare Part D programs. In its final rule, CMS chose not聽to implement a harmful change that it had initially put forward 鈥 a change strongly opposed by HFA and numerous other patient […]

Word From Washington: HFA, Others, Urge For ACA Be Upheld

April 1, 2019

17 Patient Groups Urge Appeals Court to Uphold Health Care Law Loss of Patient Protections Would Raise Barriers to Health Insurance HFA joined a group of seventeen patient advocacy organizations in filing an amicus curiae (“friend of the court”) brief today in case of Texas v. United States, pending in the U.S. Court of Appeals […]

Word From Washington: Government Shutdown Gets Reprieve

January 25, 2019

President Trump announced today that he would sign a bill funding the government through February 15th聽and ending the 5-week long government shutdown. The President said he will continue to negotiate with Congress on border security issues over the next three weeks but held out the possibility that the government could shut down again if there […]

Word From Washington: Partial Federal Government Shutdown

December 22, 2018

Congress and the President failed to reach agreement on a government spending bill before the deadline of December 21, 2018. As a result, number of U.S. government agencies have halted work and will remain shut down until a deal is reached. In contrast to some earlier budget standoffs, though, this time approximately 戮 of the […]

Word From Washington: December 14, 2018 Ruling in TX V. Azar, Update #2

December 17, 2018

Last Friday evening, we learned that a federal judge had ruled in the case of Texas v. Azar聽that the Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional in its entirety. This news has alarmed many. HFA staff want to update you on what we know at this point. First and foremost, please be aware that this ruling does […]

Word From Washington: December 14, 2018 Ruling in TX v. Azar

December 14, 2018

HFA learned late Friday night that a federal court has struck down the entire Affordable Care Act as unconstitutional. You can find an explanation of聽the lawsuit (Texas v. Azar) here and can read a description of the latest ruling here. HFA is studying the ruling and will post a more detailed update soon. In the […]

Word from Washington: HFA Joins Amicus Brief in Legal Challenge to Short-Term Health Insurance Rule

October 8, 2018

As we鈥檝e previously reported, several lawsuits are currently pending in federal courts concerning aspects of the Affordable Care Act. One lawsuit questions whether the ACA is still valid, despite the elimination of the individual mandate penalty; other cases take an opposite tack, challenging recent Administration actions and rulemakings as inconsistent with the ACA. Today, HFA […]

Word from Washington: Association Health Plans Infographic

August 23, 2018

The Trump Administration issued a final rule on June 19, 2018 expanding association health plans. The rule鈥檚 stated aim is to 鈥渉elp Americans struggling to afford health coverage find new, more affordable options.鈥 You can read more about the rule聽here. HFA and many other patient advocacy groups think the final rule takes the wrong tack.聽Association […]

Word from Washington: Short Term Health Plans Infographic

August 15, 2018

On August 1, 2018, the Trump Administration issued a final rule expanding the scope of short-term, limited duration health plans. The rule鈥檚 stated aim is to 鈥渉elp Americans struggling to afford health coverage find new, more affordable options.鈥 You can read more about the rule here. HFA and many other patient advocacy groups think the […]

Word from Washington: New Rules on Short-term Insurance

August 2, 2018

New federal rules, released Aug. 1, roll back limits on short-term health plans. Short-term plans are primarily designed to bridge gaps in coverage that can occur, e.g., when an individual is transitioning between jobs. As such, these plans don鈥檛 have to meet Affordable Care Act standards. They can deny coverage and/or can charge higher premiums […]

Word From Washington: Latest Affordable Care Act Developments

July 12, 2018

The past week has seen a flurry of news on the ACA front. We鈥檝e summarized some of the latest developments for you here. On July 10, the US Centers for Medicare and Medicaid announced it will further聽reduce funding for navigators.聽Navigators are individuals or organizations that are trained to help Americans buy insurance in the ACA […]

Word From Washington: New Challenges to ACA

June 11, 2018

  Earlier this year, Texas together with 19 other states (鈥減laintiffs鈥) filed a聽lawsuit聽challenging the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The US Department of Justice (DOJ) 鈥 which normally defends federal laws against such challenges 鈥 unexpectedly chose to side with the plaintiffs when it filed its聽brief聽on June 7th.聽The DOJ argued that key ACA […]


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