H.B. 1297 says that its purpose is to “preserve the state’s status as the prmary regulator of the business of insurance within New Hampshire,” and that no NH state agency shall plan, create or enable a state-based exchange for health insurance under the Affordable Care (health reform) Act.  At the same time, however, the new law does allow state officials, the NH DOI, to interact with the federal government concerning the creation of a federally facilitied exchange for New Hampshire. 

We will see how this turns out, because the Commissioner of the Department of Insurance still has authority to regulate all insurance products sold in the state.

Media reports have it that we will soon see the decision on the Affordable Care Act (the health reform law) from the U.S. Supreme Court any day now.  I say next week, June 28.  Just my predication, because that way all the Justices will leave for summer vacation immediately afterward.  A scientific analysis?  No.

  

In a fairly recent Client Update, I highlighted the December 19, 2011 proposed rule implementing the Physician Payments Sunshine Act.  The Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS) originally had stated that implementation would begin this year.  Well, physicians and manufacturers now are off the hook until at least 2013.  It turns out that for 2012 CMS will not be able to begin data collection required by the Act and any final rule that CMS adopts. 

In her May 3 letter to Senator Charles Grassley Marilyn Tavenner, CMS’ acting administrator, explained that “CMS does not believe it feasible to address all of the remaining issues” in time to finalize its rules on data collection for 2012.  For this year, disclosure of financial arrangements between physicians and manufacturers will not be required.   Tavenner assures us that a final rule will be produced later this year in time for the 2013 reporting season.