Posted by: danielrashke | November 10, 2011

PPACA Still Very Much in Play

Although you may not be seeing it in the papers or on the internet every day, and although the economy and jobs have replaced it as the hot topic among candidates, the healthcare reform bill is still very relevant to our industry. Provisions of the bill-known as the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA)—continue to come into law and modifications and clarifications of the bill continue to be released. Court cases regarding portions of the bill remain very much in play.

For example, here are some recent PPACA-related updates that we are following:

  • The deadline has passed for submitting a waiver request to the annual HRA Plan limits. This provision prohibits health plans from imposing annual “caps” on the reimbursement of essential health benefits. The deadline to submit a waiver request ended on September 22, which means applications are no longer being considered.
  • Another provision we are watching is CLASS, the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports program.  According to various sources, the Obama administration is putting a financially troubled part of the 2010 healthcare reform law on hold, leaving in doubt whether the benefit for disabled Americans will ever be implemented.
  • The Department of Health and Human Services recently rolled out the initial regulations regarding the establishment of State Health Insurance Exchanges under PPACA. Exchanges are state-based competitive health insurance marketplaces through which individuals and small businesses (with fewer than 100 employees) can purchase private health insurance. 
  • The Obama administration chose not to ask a federal appeals court for further review of a ruling striking down the centerpiece of the president’s sweeping healthcare overhaul—the mandate that individuals must purchase health insurance if they have none. The decision makes it more likely that the U.S. Supreme Court will hear the case during the court’s current term.

Needless to say, there continues to be a lot of movement with these regulations – and a lot to review, research, and analyze. For that reason, we made the move earlier this year to create a new position on our TASC corporate roster. Designed specifically to help us keep up with the ever-changing governmental landscape, our new Legislative Analyst position is held by Jason Westphal. Jason spends his days reviewing, analyzing, and interpreting Internal Revenue Service rulings and clarifications, governmental and healthcare related blogs, industry opinions, and upcoming trends. His efforts are another example of how TASC makes the investment to ensure we’re offering the most up-to-date and innovative services possible, how TASC strives to leave no stone unturned when it comes to protecting the compliance of our services.

We have made it easy to follow the efforts of our new Legislative Analyst.  Just visit TASC’s Capital Connection website ( The Capital Connection will keep you updated on all the latest legislative action that affects our Plans. As is our custom, TASC is ready to adapt and capitalize on any change that affects our industry. You can count on it.


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