More than 8 in 10 Federal Marketplace Enrollees Receive Tax Credits
According to data released by CMS, 7.7 million consumers, or 87 percent of those on the Federally-facilitated Marketplace with a 2015 plan selection qualified for tax credits to subsidize premium costs. The average monthly tax credit was $263 per person per month, representing a 72% savings off the unsubsidized price of the plan. Savings were highest in Florida and Texas, with 1.5 million Floridians receiving an average monthly tax credit of $294 and more than a million Texans receiving an average monthly tax credit of $239. Consumers in State-based Marketplaces saw similar savings.
States Realize Savings from Medicaid Innovations
Two new reports show states realize significant savings from both Medicaid expansion and delivery reform. Analysis by our own team at Manatt Health Solutions for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation finds Kentucky and Arkansas, two states that expanded Medicaid, will be able to fully fund expansion costs at least through 2021 with net savings of $820 million and $370 million, respectively. States with Medicaid Accountable Care Organization (ACO) programs are also seeing significant savings. As reported by The Commonwealth Fund, Colorado’s Regional Care Collaborative Organizations have generated net savings of between $29 and $33 million over three years. Minnesota’s Integrated Health Partnerships initiative achieved State savings of $10.5 million in its first year.
Employer Organizations Request HHS Delay Small Group Market Expansion
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, with support from the National Association of Health Underwriters and other employer organizations, urged U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Burwell for a two-year delay of the expansion of the small group market from businesses with fewer than 50 employees to businesses with fewer than 99 employees. Under the expansion, the coverage provided by approximately 150,000 employers will become subject to insurance reform requirements including essential health benefits, rating rules, and minimum actuarial value and cost-sharing requirements. Employer organizations have lobbied against this expansion, arguing that premiums for the mid-size employer market could increase by 6-18 percent if enough employers choose to self-insure or drop coverage, making it more expensive for remaining employers to provide coverage to their employees going forward.