From Inside Health Insurance Exchanges - A recent study concludes that an influx of new competitors participating on public exchanges helped keep coverage costs in check. Across all states, the average premiums for the second lowest-cost silver plans (i.e., the benchmark plan) sold on public exchanges were flat from last year, according to research from the National Opinion Research Center (NORC) and released last month by the Commonwealth Fund. For 2015, the average benchmark plan premium was $314 per month. Last year, benchmark plans accounted for 65% of exchange-based enrollment. Read more
From Inside Health Insurance Exchanges - Hindered by high premiums, fierce competitors and virtually no name recognition, many Consumer Owned and Operated Plans (CO-OPs) were slow to get out of the gate last year. For the 2015 plan year, however, CO-OPs in many markets underpriced more established players inside and outside of the public insurance exchanges. Read more
From ACO Business News - There’s no doubt that managing prescription medication costs and utilization can produce good clinical results — and possibly financial results — for accountable care organizations. However, only a handful of ACOs are currently using such programs to help them handle drug costs. That doesn’t mean ACOs aren’t interested in leveraging drug use and spending to improve quality and control costs — they are. Read more
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