May 6: What can be done to “eliminate barriers” to let insurers sell plans across state lines? The CMS wants to know. The agency posted a request for information seeking input back in March. Today is the last day to comment. In particular, the CMS wanted feedback about how states could use Section 1333 of the Affordable Care Act, which allows insurers to enter into a “healthcare choice compact” to sell out-of-state coverage if state regulators agree. The CMS’ goal is to boost competition and increase access to more affordable coverage. But the American Academy of Actuaries claimed savings would be limited because premiums are driven by the local cost of care, regardless of where the care is purchased. We’ll have coverage early this week analyzing industry comments.
May 7: The debate over drug prices often swings to the cost of innovation. The Senate Judiciary Committee aims to tackle the topic during a hearing titled, “Intellectual Property and the Price of Prescription Drugs: Balancing Innovation and Competition.”