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CMS weighs whether to require insurers to accept premium assistance from non-profits. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released its annual Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters (NBPP) rule on November 20th proposing the standards that qualified health plans in federally-facilitated Marketplaces (FFM) must follow for 2017.

The proposed rule specifically responded to comments from PSI and other groups criticizing CMS’ refusal to require that Marketplace insurers accept premium assistance from non-profits, as it does for state and federal healthcare programs like the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program. PSI pointed out that the agency’s interim final rule giving insurers such discretion is inconsistent with multiple guidance documents and responses to Congress in which CMS officials insist their concerns about premium assistance skewing Marketplace risk pools relate soley to for-profit assistance and that non-profit assistance is permissible so long as it is from a bona-fide charity(see Update for Week of June 2, 2014)