Epilepsy Foundation Joins 138 Patient Groups in I Am Essential Letter to Oppose HHS Proposal to Scale Back Future Essential Health Benefits
On November 27, 2017, the Epilepsy Foundation signed onto a comment letter with 138 patient and community organizations to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The letter emphasizes concerns over the proposed rule, Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters for 2019, which would allow states to scale back essential health benefits insurers must offer to their beneficiaries in the future. I Am Essential urges HHS to maintain the current process for states to select their essential health benefits. Read the letter below.
I Am Essential - Letter to HHS on NBPP (November 27, 2017)
Epilepsy Foundation Joins I Am Essential Letter to Sens. Alexander and Murray on Bipartisan ACA Efforts
On September 30, 2017, the Epilepsy Foundation, who co-leads the I Am Essential coalition, sent a letter to Sens. Alexander and Murray - who lead the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions - thanking them for holding hearings and pursuing legislation to stablize the small group and individual insurance market under the ACA. I Am Essential encouraged them consider important patient protections and access to benefits that are critical for all Americans, especially those living with chronic and serious conditions, when continuing to work on this issue. Read the letter below.
I Am Essential - Letter to Senators Alexander and Murray (September 13, 2017)
Epilepsy Foundation Joins 132 Patient & Community Organizations in I Am Essential Letter to U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
On July 12, 2017, the Epilepsy Foundation, our affiliates, and dozens of additional patient and community groups joined an I Am Essential letter to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, offering suggestions on ways to reduce regulatory burdens and improve healthcare choices to empower patients. The letter stressed the importance of ACA patient protections, and urged HHS not to make regulatory changes that would undermine these protections. Read the letter below.
IAE Letter to HHS (July 12, 2017)
Washington Examiner Highlights I Am Essential Press Release in Article on CMS Plans to Review Fewer ACA Plans' Drug Formularies
On April 17, 2017, the Washington Examiner published, "White House to Pull Back Obamacare Oversight," an article on the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)'s announcement that it will review fewer ACA marketplace plans for drug coverage and will instead rely on states to conduct these complicated reviews. The story highlights I Am Essential's press release on the 2018 Letter to Issuers.
Read the article here: http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/white-house-to-pull-back-obamacare-oversight/article/2620346
I Am Essential Issues Press Release with Concerns About Limited CCIIO Drug Coverage Review
On April 14, 2017, the I Am Essential coalition sent out a press release expressing concern with the Center for Consumer Information & Insurance Oversight (CCIIO)'s announcement it will no longer review drug coverage for all qualified health plans. CCIIO will instead rely on states to conduct these complicated reviews to ensure that plan design does not discriminate against patients. Enforcement of patient protections is critical for ensuring individuals can access the medications they need to manage their conditions and many states simply do not have the laws and regulations in place to protect patients against bad practices.
View the full release below.
IAE Press Release - CCIO Prescription Drug Coverage Review (April 14, 2017)
Wall Street Journal Highlights I Am Essential Letter in Article on Patient Responses to ACA Repeal Efforts
On March 8, 2017, the Wall Street Journal published "Patients Prepare for Life After Obamacare," an article summarizing the effect of proposed ACA repeals on patients with special health conditions and highlighting the I Am Essential coalition letter to HHS Secretary Dr. Tom Price.
Read the article here: https://www.wsj.com/articles/patients-prepare-for-life-after-obamacare-1489004714.
I Am Essential Comments on ACA Market Stabilization Proposed Rule
The I Am Essential coalition submitted comments to the ACA Market Stabilization proposed rule on Tuesday, March 7, 2017. This proposed rule was drafted by the Department of Health and Human Services under the new administration. It proposes to make changes to the rules of business within the ACA Marketplaces including the length of time for open enrollment, processes around special enrollment periods, and requirements of actuarial values for particular plans. Read the comment below.
IAE Comment on ACA Market Stabilization Rule (March 7, 2017)
Epilepsy Foundation Joins 200 Patient Advocacy Groups in Letter to HHS Secretary Price
The Epilepsy Foundation, as a leader of the I Am Essential coalition, joined 200 patient groups, including all Epilepsy Foundation chapters and affiliates across the country, in sending a February 10, 2017 letter to recently confirmed Secretary of Health and Human Services Dr. Tom Price, urging him to maintain existing patient protections enacted in the Affordable Care Act. It is especially important to advocate for patient protections like the Essential Health Benefits and patient access to prescription drugs their providers prescribe as Congress and the Administration consider changes to current healthcare laws and regulations.
IAE Letter to HHS Secretary Dr. Tom Price (Feb. 10, 2017)
Read the I Am Essential press release on the February 10 letter here.
I Am Essential Urges HHS Secretary Burwell to Ensure Patient Protection Compliance in 2016 Healthcare Plans
On May 15, 2015, the I Am Essential coalition sent the below letter to HHS Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell urging her to conduct a thorough review of the 2016 plans and reject those that do not comply with new patient protections included in the most recent Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters for 2016. More than 215 organizations spoke in a united voice urging improved access to care and plan transparency as well as warning against discriminatory practices such as high patient cost-sharing and excessive use of prior authorization and other medical management techniques. Read the letter below.
I Am Essential Letter to Secretary Burwell on Qualified Health Plans (May 15, 2015)