AHIP’s Ig­nagni will bid adieu as her group awaits King rul­ing

Modern Healthcare - - THE WEEK AHEAD - —Beth Kutscher

Health in­sur­ance lead­ers will meet this week in Nashville at a time when its mem­bers are fac­ing ma­jor chal­lenges and changes.

The In­sti­tute 2015, held by Amer­ica’s Health In­sur­ance Plans, will be the fi­nal one for long­time AHIP CEO Karen Ig­nagni, who is leav­ing in Septem­ber to be­come CEO of Em­blemHealth. The in­sur­ance trade group has yet to name a suc­ces­sor to Ig­nagni, who is widely re­garded as one of the most pow­er­ful health­care lob­by­ists in Wash­ing­ton.

The meet­ing comes as in­sur­ers await the U.S. Supreme Court de­ci­sion in King v. Bur­well, due this month. The rul­ing will de­cide the fate of pre­mium sub­si­dies for mil­lions of peo­ple in up to 37 states us­ing the fed­eral ex­change. If the sub­si­dies are struck down, plans would face a huge dis­rup­tion of their in­di­vid­ual-mar­ket busi­ness and likely would seek big rate hikes. Plan of­fi­cials un­doubt­edly will be dis­cussing con­tin­gency mea­sures.

Even be­fore the rul­ing, ma­jor in­sur­ers in some states are ask­ing for big rate in­creases—more than 40% in some cases—to cover what they say are higher-than-ex­pected med­i­cal costs for ben­e­fi­cia­ries.

In­sur­ance ex­changes will top the con­fer­ence agenda, with a fo­cus on pri­vate ex­changes. The Blue Cross and Blue Shield As­so­ci­a­tion an­nounced plans last month to launch a pri­vate ex­change for re­tirees. Other tracks will ad­dress the grow­ing power of con­sumers, and what to do with the vast troves of data the in­dus­try now cap­tures.

The lineup of key­note speak­ers in­cludes for­mer Pres­i­dent Bill Clin­ton and Mitt Rom­ney. Health­care lead­ers who will speak in­clude Prov­i­dence Health & Ser­vices CEO Dr. Rod­ney Hochman and Medtronic CEO Omar Ishrak.


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