As the second in a series to explore implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, this briefing provided an overview of how the states and the federal government are working together to implement various provisions of the new law. For example, while the law allows for flexibility in the way states set up exchanges, states will likely need technical assistance from the federal government to get the job done.
This session, sponsored by the Alliance for Health Reform and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, looked into the key challenges facing states, including working within state legislative cycles against tight deadlines in the federal law, creating new roles at the state level as state budgets are being squeezed, and others. It looked at both near-term provisions, such as high-risk pools, as well as other provisions farther down the road, such as setting up exchanges and instituting changes to Medicaid eligibility.
What challenges need to be overcome by the states to implement various provisions in the law? What can we learn from implementation of previous federal reforms such as the Balanced Budget Act (BBA) and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)? How are states managing new tasks while making job cutbacks in tough economic times? What are some of the various policymaking tools states are using to affect change in the business of health care? What are leading states doing right? What are some of the federal legislative and policymaking challenges ahead?
Panelists were: Jay Angoff, head of HHS’s Office of Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight; Len Nichols, director of the Center for Health Policy Research and Ethics at George Mason University;Brian Webb, manager for health policy and legislation at National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC); and Lorez Meinhold, director of health reform implementation in Colorado. Sen. Jay Rockefeller moderated, assisted by Ed Howard of the Alliance.
Full Transcript (Adobe Acrobat PDF)