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Adding to opposition already expressed by physician and hospital groups, America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP) and the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association (BCBSA) came out against the Graham-Cassidy legislation to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

CMS Administrator Seema Verma, MPH, said the Trump administration will take the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) in a “new direction,” claiming the policies under the last administration encouraged consolidation and providers need more “freedom” to design new care delivery models.

Once thought to be the policy equivalent of a Hail Mary pass, the plan to replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA) known as the Graham-Cassidy bill appears to have gained momentum—and with it, extra attention from healthcare industry groups like the American Medical Association (AMA) that have opposed Republicans’ so-far unsuccessful efforts to repeal the law.

Amid attempts to agree on short-term stabilization of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and Democrats coming out in support for a “Medicare-for-all” bill, a group of Republican senators unveiled what could be their last chance to repeal and replace the ACA.

Members of the Senate Health, Labor, Education and Pensions (HELP) Committee were encouraged to offer greater flexibility under the Affordable Care Act’s “state innovation waivers,” the details of which could spell trouble for the fledging compromise between Democrats and Republicans on a quick fix for the law.

 

Recent Headlines

Legislation limiting malpractice damages passes House

Noneconomic damages in certain medical malpractice lawsuits would be capped at $250,000 under a bill passed through the House with only Republican support on June 28.

Senate to delay ACA replacement vote until after July 4 recess

The Senate will not vote on the Republican plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act before the July 4 recess. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, informed his Republican colleagues at a June 27 lunch, according to multiple news outlets.

CBO: Senate’s ACA repeal bill would destabilize some markets, increase deductibles

Some 22 million more people would be uninsured by 2026, deductibles and out-of-pocket costs would sharply rise while premiums would be lower and certain markets could be unstable if the Senate’s version of an Affordable Care Act repeal-and-replace plan becomes law, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

Six-month insurance lockout penalty added to Senate ACA repeal bill

Four days after they first released it publicly, Senate Republicans have made a change to their version on Affordable Care Act repeal-and-replace legislation, adding a “continuous coverage” provision to try and discourage people from canceling their insurance plans.

Industry groups oppose Senate ACA repeal: ‘We cannot let this happen’

Reaction to the Senate’s version of an Affordable Care Act repeal-and-replace plan, titled the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA) ranged from strong opposition from physician and hospital groups to outrage from Democrats, while one insurance organization saw some positives in the legislation.

Q+A: AMGA says MACRA proposed rule sends wrong message on value-based care

Groups representing physicians, hospitals, internists and health IT were quick to praise the proposed rule for the second year of the new payment tracks under the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA). The American Medical Group Association, however, has a decidedly different take.

Senate’s version of ACA repeal released

The legislation takes many provisions from the House-passed American Health Care Act (AHCA) under a new name: the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA).

Proposed MACRA changes praised in initial industry reaction

The American Medical Association (AMA) and the American Hospital Association (AHA) appear pleased with the proposed rule for the second year of the Quality Payment Program (QPP), with some groups reserving judgment until they have time to review the 1,058-page regulation.

CMS proposes raising low-volume exemption, adding virtual groups in MACRA’s second year

The proposed rule for the second year of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act’s (MACRA) Quality Payment Program (QPP) has been released by CMS, with its stated goal to “simplify the program, especially for small, independent, and rural practices, while ensuring fiscal sustainability and high-quality care.”

The timeline leading up to the Senate’s ACA repeal vote

Senate Republican leaders appear to be sticking to their goal of holding a vote on the American Health Care Act (AHCA), their vehicle for repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act, by the end of June, despite resistance from both Democrats and the healthcare industry on legislation that has yet to be released.

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