Georgetown Center for Children and Families

The Georgetown University Center for Children and Families (CCF) is an independent, nonpartisan policy and research center whose mission is to expand and improve health coverage for America's children and families. The Center’s work includes conducting policy analysis and research, developing strategies, recommending solutions, and providing a forum for advocates and stakeholders to share information and develop policy solutions. See below for more information about recent activities, accomplishments, and advocacy work and tools!

Regulatory Analysis

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  • CCF Published Post on New Rules Concerning Coverage Lock Outs for Nonpayment of Premiums

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    CCF: The Georgetown Center for Children and Families (CCF) Say Ahhh! Blog published a post regarding the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) new rules that will protect children from being locked out of coverage for more than 90 days due to nonpayment of premiums. Additionally, the new rules eliminate states’ abilities to require the repayment of outstanding premiums as a condition for re-enrollment.
  • CCF Published Post on Final Medicaid, CHIP, and Exchange Rule, Highlighting Income Verification Requirement

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    CCF: Georgetown Center for Children and Families (CCF) Say Ahhh! Blog published a post regarding the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) final rule on Medicaid, the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), and Exchanges. The blog notes that four of the eight priority issues identified in CCF’s comments on the proposed rule were addressed in the final rule. CCF was pleased to see HHS is working with states to identify alternative strategies if states are not ready to implement a single streamlined application by open enrollment on October 1st CCF also was glad that the final rule formalized a new certification application counselor program for Medicaid and CHIP, strengthened the cost-effective test, and reaffirmed that participation in premium assistance is voluntary. However, CCF noted that HHS missed an opportunity to eliminate CHIP waiting periods and hopes that HHS will release additional final regulations on this and other issues not addressed in the final rule, including: first year coverage for infants, coverage for former foster children up to age 26, simplification of paper based-documentation of citizenship verification, and a more comprehensive definition of “lawfully present.”

    CCF also published a blog post explaining the final rule’s income verification language  that was misinterpreted by the media. CCF confirmed that all Exchanges will be required to verify applicants’ reported income to confirm their eligibility for insurance affordability programs. However, if the applicant’s reported income is significantly lower than what is reported in their tax return and if no additional electronic sources of income data are available to confirm the reported amount, State-based Exchanges have the option in 2014 to accept the income level reported by the applicant. If the State-based Exchange elects to use this option it must implement random sampling of applicants to ensure that relying on applicant’s attested income is reliable.
  • CCF Released Comments to Navigator Proposed Rule

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    CCF: The Georgetown Center for Children and Families submitted comments on HHS’s proposed rule on standards for navigators and assisters in Health Insurance Exchanges. As part of their comments, CCF provided examples of the number of individuals in states that are expected to use these assistance programs and the amount of funding needed to ensure that individuals receive the assistance they need. CCF argues that available consumer assistance funding for states planning to use only the federal navigator grant will be “strikingly inadequate” and recommends that HHS identify additional resources to fund these programs, especially in the Exchanges’ first year of operation.  In addition, Tricia Brooks of CCF published the last post in the Say Ahhh! Navigator blog series highlighting the importance of determining the correct amount of Navigators needed in small and large states

  • CCF Praised HHS for New Model Applications for Health Care Coverage

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    CCF: The Georgetown Center for Children and Families (CCF) praised the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services for the new model applications for individuals and families to apply for health care coverage on their Say Ahhh! blog. CCF wrote that “the new models represent a major step forward – they are much shorter, crisper and easier to fill out than the draft versions that were released in January of this year.”
  • CCF Reviews Federal Proposed Rules on Navigators and In-person Assisters

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    CCF: Tricia Brooks of the Georgetown Center for Children and Families (CCF), published a blog post in CCF’s Say Ahhh! Blog reviewing the navigator and in-person assister proposed rules that were released by HHS.
  • CCF Submits Comments to HHS on Medicaid/CHIP/Exchange Proposed Rule and Explains the Essential Health Benefit Final Rule

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    CCF: The Georgetown Center for Children and Families published a blog post on their Say Ahhh! Blog providing a breakdown of their comments submitted to HHS’s Medicaid, CHIP and Exchange proposed rule released on January 22nd.  CCF’s comments included: developing a contingency plan for states who are not ready by October 1st; eliminating CHIP waiting periods; retaining and improving the certified application counselors program instead of developing a new program; ensuring that newborns of women covered by Medicaid and CHIP are automatically enrolled for coverage; providing former foster care children with coverage up to age 26; strengthening proposed simplifications to paper-based documentation of citizenship; adopting a more inclusive definition of "lawfully present"; and clarifying that the cost-effectiveness test for premium assistance includes the cost of cost-sharing protections. In addition CCF also submitted comments to HHS on the proposed Single Streamlined Application models and published a blog post providing an overview of the Essential Health Benefits Final Rule.
  • Advocates Say No to Waiting Periods! First Focus, CCF and California Grantees Sent Comments to HHS on CHIP Waiting Periods in the Proposed Rule

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    First Focus, CCF & CA: First Focus, CCF, and The Children’s Partnership, in collaboration with various other organizations, submitted comments to HHS on the CHIP waiting period provision included in the Medicaid and CHIP proposed rule.

     

  • Fix that Family Glitch! First Focus and CCF Were Quoted in Politico on the Family Glitch in the IRS' Minimum Essential Rule

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    First Focus & CCF: First Focus and the Georgetown Center for Children and Families were quoted in Politico regarding IRS’ Minimal Essential Coverage final rule, the "family glitch", and the importance of preserving CHIP.
  • Webinar Alert! GeorgetownCCF Hosted Calls About Employers' Obligations to Offer Coverage and Proposed Medicaid and Exchange Regulations

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    CCF: The Georgetown Center for Children and Families (CCF) held a state-partner webinar on January 15th discussing effects on kids and families in the proposed federal rules on employer’s obligation to offer coverage. The webinar also provided an update on state-based Exchanges that received conditional approval for their blueprints and new guidance released by CMS on State Partnership Exchanges.  On February 4th, CCF hosted a state partner call with CMS on Medicaid and Exchange proposed regulations released on January 22nd covering:  structure and options around Medicaid, CHIP and Exchange eligibility notices and appeals; benefits and cost-sharing; streamlining eligibility categories; and standards for certifying application counselors.  In addition, CCF's Say Ahhh! Blog published a post regarding the IRS’s Minimum Essential Coverage final rule. The blog stated that due to the rule including a “family penalty”, hundreds of thousands of children will not be able to access subsides for private health insurance. Jocelyn A. Guyer, Executive Director of CCF, was also quoted in the New York Times stating that the rule “is bad news for Kids”.
  • KidsWell Partners Issued Brief on Defining Essential Health Benefits for Children

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    CA: Mike Odeh, of Children Now, in collaboration with First Focus, Georgetown Center for Children and Families, The Children’s Defense Fund, Children’s Hospital Association, and Family Voices, released an issue brief on defining Essential Health Benefits for children.
  • CCF Hosted Webinar to Review Proposed Federal Rules on Essential Health Benefits and Market Reforms

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    CCF: The Georgetown Center For Children and Families (CCF) held a state-partner webinar on December 18th to review aspects of the proposed federal rules on Essential Health Benefits and health insurance market reforms for children and families. The webinar also included CCF’s suggestions for drafting comments to HHS, which were due on December 26, 2012, and a review of the state-focused children’s coverage communication strategy. CCF also published a post on their Say Ahhh! Blog on their draft comments to the federal proposed rules on Essential Health Benefits and Market Reform.
  • CCF Prepared Draft Comments to HHS in Response to the Interim Final Rule Restricting Coverage to Immigrant Young Adults

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    CCF: The Center for Children and Families prepared draft comments to HHS in response to the interim final rule restricting immigrant teenagers and young adults who are eligible for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) from receiving health insurance coverage under the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan Program (PCIP) of the ACA.
  • CCF Issued Comments on the Federally-Facilitated Exchange Guidance

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    The Georgetown Center for Children and Families (CCF) developed a template of child-specific comments to help organizations draft their comments to the Center for Consumer Information and Insurance (CCIIO) on the Federally-facilitated Exchange (FFE) guidance released on May 16, 2012. The template includes specific comments on the following subsections: (1) plan management in a FFE; (2) eligibility for insurance affordability programs and enrollment in the individual market; and (3) stakeholder input. Comments are due to CCIIO by June 18, 2012.
  • CCF and Mississippi Center for Justice Issued Comments on HHS' 2011 Essential Health Benefit Bulletin

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    The Georgetown Center for Children and Families (CCF) drafted model comments for state and national advocates to work from as they respond to HHS’ December 2011 EHB bulletin. The comments stress the importance of: (1) ensuring children’s needs are taken into account; (2) defining medical necessity to assure children can access EHBs meaningfully and consistently; (3) limiting insurer flexibility; and (4) assuring a transparent process of benchmark selection and updating. The Mississippi Center for Justice based their comments on CCF’s model.

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