February 10, 2014
This article was reported by Reuters.
Reuters reported that the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) may reinforce its position on health plans accepting third-party payments, such as those covered by the 1990 Ryan White Act, in an effort to prevent insurers from denying coverage to individuals with HIV/AIDS. Currently, hundreds of Louisiana residents with HIV/AIDS who are trying to obtain health coverage under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) are in danger of rejection by the insurance plans they selected due to a dispute over federal subsidies and the interpretation of rules about preventing fraud. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana is rejecting checks from a federal program designed to assist patients with drug costs and insurance premiums, and is notifying customers that their ACA enrollment will be discontinued. CMS has issued guidance encouraging insurers to accept these third-party premium payments, but feel that encouragement may not be enough. The lead "Obamacare" agency said "Given the importance of access to care for people with HIV/AIDS, CMS is considering amending those rules to require issuers to accept these payments."