Friday, February 17, 2012


The Washington Post reports that Congress has passed the tax extenders act that allows the payroll tax cut and the Medicare Part B patch to remain in place until the end of this year. It should be a humdinger of a lame duck session following the Presidential election.

OPM has posted its FY 2013 budget justification. This interesting document discusses OPM's recent accomplishments and its plans for the future. Search for FEHB to find the points about our beloved program.

Speaking of planning, OPM announced three FEHBP related regulatory projects in the recent semi annual regulatory agenda:

OPMProposed Rule StageFederal Employees Health Benefits Program; Tribes and Tribal Organizations3206-AM40
OPMProposed Rule StageFederal Employees Health Benefits Program; Disputed Claims and External Review Requirements3206-AM42
OPMProposed Rule StageFederal Employees Health Benefits Program: Miscellaneous Changes Proposed by the Affordable Care Act3206-AM4

As explained on OPM's website and in the FY 2013 budget justification, OPM, pursuant to the Affordable Care Act, is opening the FEHBP to Indian tribe employers as soon as May 1, 2012.

HHS formally announced yesterday that it will take steps postpone the October 1, 2013, implementation date for the ICD-10 code sets "for certain health care entities." HHS did not give details on the length but it did endorse the code set's use. It looks like HHS will delay the ICD-10 code set for doctor's offices but not for hospitals or health plans.

HHS also released yesterday for public comment model letters for insurers to use notify enrollees about the results of the minimum loss ratio testing for the prior year.  The letters are available on the CCIIO website.

The Postal Service unveiled a five year business plan that includes seceding from the FEHBP.

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