Friday, April 14, 2017


Yesterday, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Service finalized their recently proposed rule intended to help stabilize the individual health insurance market. The rule floats the FEHBlog's boat because it simplifies the system yet sensibly enforce the important rules.

In contrast, Accord reports on a Treasury audit finding that the IRS has not been able to impose employer mandate penalties on its any "applicable large employer" because of, among other reasons, "several major issues with the technology being used to assist the IRS enforce the employer mandate."   The ACA simply can be too complicated to enforce.

Employee Benefit News tells us about trade association recommendations on controlling prescription drug costs. According to the PBM trade association's (PCMA) president the wave of the future is narrow pharmacy networks.  "The aim is to determine which drugstores are most convenient for employees and then negotiate substantial discounts where there are competing drugstores in those areas."

Earlier this week, HHS's Office for Civil Rights announced another HIPAA security rule violation settlement with a health care provider. The investigation that lead to the settlement was triggered by a large data breach (> 500 affected patients).

Finally the FEHBlog got a kick out of this Wall Street Journal article reporting that
Plaintiffs’ lawyers have long solicited clients through television advertisements that warn of a drug’s potentially harmful side effects.
Now, a powerful congressman, backed by the leading doctors’ group and some drug companies, is pushing back, saying the ads are to blame for patients suffering harm or even dying after dropping treatment. Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R., Va.), chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, wants the ads to include a warning that patients should talk with their doctors before adjusting medication.
What's good for the goose, etc.

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