Some immigrants who signed up for insurance coverage via HealthCare.gov are on notice that they could lose their coverage unless they immediately furnish proof that they are legally qualified for coverage. The CMS sent out 310,000 letters giving the enrollees until Sept. 5 to send copies of green cards, proof of citizenship or other documents to show that they qualify for the coverage. Otherwise, their coverage will end Sept. 30. Some of the discrepancies the agency is concerned about include instances where information reported in the application, such as a Social Security or permanent resident card number, is incomplete or different from information on file.
The CMS has announced that its Open Payments website registration for doctors is back in operation.
But ProPublica reported Friday that the CMS will withhold about one-third of the records due to data inconsistencies. The agency is set to make data on medical device and pharmaceutical manufacturer payments to doctors available to the public Sept. 30. Currently, the website is intended to allow physicians to check payment data attributed to them and contest any perceived erroneous data. Earlier this month, two doctors with the same name but in different states found their data had been comingled, prompting the CMS to temporarily suspend registration to investigate.
Several for-profit hospitals and insurers have booked improved financial results thanks in part to healthcare reform, but providers and payers still face headwinds to maintain sustained profitability, Standard & Poor’s analysts said. Hospitals and insurers are likely to continue to benefit from the exchanges and Medicaid expansion for the rest of this year and into 2015, S&P said. But exchange enrollees and lower-income patients will still represent a minority of their business, cautioned S&P analyst David Peknay. “We have to keep it in perspective. The change in the number of insured people has still not changed all that much overall,” Peknay said, noting that Medicare and employer-sponsored plans remain the main pipelines for hospitals.