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Thursday, July 12, 2018

Health insurance premiums in flux
As health insurers prepared to file their rate requests Wednesday for individual plans in Tennessee next year, the Trump administration has thrown a wrench into the current payment method that adjusts payments to insurers to compensate for plans to cover higher risk individuals. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has decided to freeze more than $10 billion of planned risk adjustment payments to health insurers under the Affordable Care Act. Administrator Seema Verma said the agency sided with a court decision in New Mexico which ruled that the risk-adjustment formula was illegal even though another court challenge upheld the program. The Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association in Tennessee said removing risk adjustment payments "will significantly increase 2019 premiums for millions of individuals and small business owners." The uncertainty about the pool of those insured is likely to cause companies to charge more to cover their higher risk. Tennessee's market had appeared to be stabilizing with two new insurers entering the market next year and BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee said it expected relatively stable rates next year. But the suspension of the federal payments for insurers who take on riskier consumers will complicate next year's market and boost prices again. Julie Mix McPeak, Commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance and who is president of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, said she hopes the uncertainty about the payments can be resolved quickly. "State regulators will be in contact with carriers to determine the potential impact a lengthy suspension of risk adjustment payments could have on solvency and premiums," McPeak said.


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Wednesday, April 24, 2019

  • House approves voucher bill
  • Newport City Council special meeting
  • Newport Utilities
  • Drug take-back

    Tuesday, April 23, 2019

  • Six injured in crash
  • Cocke Finance Committee
  • Cocke County grand jury
  • Legislative action

    Monday, April 22, 2019

  • Cocke County flooding
  • Tennessee jobs
  • NFL draft coming to Nashville
  • Earth Day
  • Sturgein release

    Saturday, April 20, 2019

  • Turner arrest
  • Southerland report
  • Unemployment in Tennessee
  • Mueller report

    Friday, April 19, 2019

  • TDOT projects
  • Cocke County Partnership
  • Voucher plan may be stalled
  •    

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