Feds may stop payments for state's Essential Plan
Dan Goldberg is reporting at Politico New York the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has informed the state budget office that if Congress does not fund the cost-sharing reduction program, the federal government will halt payments for a portion of New York's Essential, or Basic Health Plan. The action would create a nearly $1 billion hole in the state budget next year., and impact the last quarter of the current budget year, as well. The Essential Plan provides low-cost health insurance to residents who earn less than twice the federal poverty level. It is a creation of the Affordable Care Act and funded, in part, with money from the cost-sharing reduction program, which President Donald Trump stopped paying for in October. Contracts with insurance companies for 2018 already have been signed so the state is on the hook to pay insurers for the plans. “It’s a very big deal,” said Kathy Shure, a senior vice president with the Greater New York Hospital Association. “...Obviously, that program is very important.” Read the full story at Politico New York.