National Health Law Program

Founded in 1969, the National Health Law Program (NHeLP) protects and advances the health rights of low-income and underserved individuals and families. The oldest nonprofit of its kind, NHeLP advocates, educates and litigates at the federal and state levels. NHeLP’s lawyers and policy analysts stand up for the rights of the millions of people who struggle to access affordable, quality health care.

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  • NHeLP Publishes Fact Sheet on EHB Updates

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    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program published a fact sheet on changes to the Essential Health Benefits (EHB) standard as outlined in HHS’s Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters for 2016 final rule. The fact sheet reviews existing EHB rules and the new changes, including: the option for states to select a new base-benchmark plan for the 2017 plan year; a uniform definition of habilitative services; clarification on the age limit for pediatric services; and, the need to publish up-to-date and accurate lists of all covered drugs on its formulary. The fact sheet also highlights advocacy opportunities, where applicable.

  • KidsWell Partners Issue Press Releases Following King v. Burwell Oral Arguments

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    NASHP, NHeLP: The National Academy for State Health Policy (NASHP) and the National Health Law Program (NHeLP) responded quickly to oral arguments in the King v. Burwell Supreme Court case. NASHP promised to continue to closely monitor the case, and Elizabeth G. Taylor, executive director of NHeLP, stated, “[the] arguments demonstrate how politically driven this attack on the Affordable Care Act is, and how divorced the challengers are from the lives of people relying on the health care made possible because of the law.”

  • KidsWell Partners Issue Alert About Healthcare.gov Incorrectly Calculating Household Income

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    CCF, NHeLP: The Georgetown Center for Children and Families, the National Health Law Program, and the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, issued an alert that Healthcare.gov has been incorrectly counting social security income for tax dependents. The brief notes that under federal rules, the social security income of children and other tax dependents only counts if the dependent is required to file a tax return, but that Healthcare.gov has been counting it even if the dependent is not required to file taxes.  

  • NHeLP Publishes E-Newsletter on the ACA Tax Filing Requirements

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    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program published an e-newsletter examining the tax filing requirements and new IRS forms for individuals receiving subsidized coverage through Marketplaces. The newsletter reviews the ACA’s minimum essential coverage requirement, exceptions to the requirement, and how to claim and reconcile tax credits. 

  • NHeLP Examines California’s Marketplace to Medicaid Transition

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    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program published an issue of Lessons from California examining how Covered California handled newly eligible enrollees transitioning from the Marketplace to Medi-Cal. The brief explains that nearly 30,000 individuals were found newly eligible for Medi-Cal due to decreased projected incomes for 2015. California attempted to make consumers’ transition to Medi-Cal seamless by automatically enrolling them in a Medi-Cal managed care plan as of January 1, 2015. Although this ensured there were no gaps in coverage, the brief is concerned that consumers did not receive sufficient notice of changes. 
  • NHeLP Files Amicus Brief in King v. Burwell

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    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program, along with AARP, filed an amicus brief in the King v. Burwell case that is currently before the U.S. Supreme Court. The plaintiffs in the case contend that subsidies can only be provided to consumers in State-based Marketplaces (SBMs) and that consumers in Federally Facilitated Marketplaces (FFMs) are not eligible for subsidies. The brief argues the elimination of premium tax credits for individuals in the FFM will make insurance unaffordable and inaccessible to millions of Americans, directly countering the ACA’s goals. The brief claims there is precedent that when the outcome of such a development would run completely against a statute’s intentions, the arguments must be rejected.
  • NHeLP Outlines 2015 Priorities

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    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program (NHeLP) published an e-newsletter outlining the organization’s top priorities and goals for 2015. The newsletter explains NHeLP’s goals and expectations for many issue areas, including: ACA implementation; Medicaid expansion; CHIP; and reproductive health.

  • NHeLP Comments on CMS Draft Letter

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    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program submitted comments to CMS on the “Draft 2016 Letter to Issuers in the Federally-facilitated Marketplaces.” The comments expand on those already submitted to HHS in November 2014 and include specific comments on: network adequacy; provider directory links; essential community providers; accreditation; patient safety standards; discriminatory benefit design; prescription drugs; QHP performance and oversight; and consumer support.

  • NHeLP Publishes Summary of 2014 ACA Litigation

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    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program published an issue of Health Advocate that provides a summary of significant ACA-related cases in 2014. The e-newsletter examines cases that directly challenge: the ACA; coverage of reproductive health services; Medicaid maintenance of effort requirement; and preemption.

  • NHeLP Publishes Lessons From California Focused on State’s Marketplace Renewal Process

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    NHeLP: In this month’s edition of Lessons from California, the National Health Law Program reviews Covered California’s renewal process and how it differs from the FFM renewal process. The newsletter highlights challenges with the renewal process, including limited availability of translated notices for non-English and Spanish speaking populations and coordination between Covered California and Medi-Cal. Despite these challenges, the newsletter predicts most Covered California enrollees will retain coverage with minimal disruption of care in 2015.

  • NHeLP Posts Webinar on Rules for MAGI Determination

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    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program released materials from a webinar it hosted as part of CMS’ navigator and assister training series. The webinar focuses on using Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) to calculate a consumer’s total household income for purposes of determining their eligibility for tax credits and subsidies for coverage purchased through a marketplace, as well as eligibility for Medicaid and CHIP.

  • NHeLP Publishes E-Newsletter on Open Enrollment

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    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program published an issue of Health Advocate focusing on challenges and concerns regarding the 2015 Open Enrollment Period. The newsletter acknowledges the enrollment process has advanced considerably since last year, but points to the shortened timeline and redetermination process as major concerns.

  • NHeLP Submits Comments on Draft IRS Forms

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    NHeLP:  The National Health Law Program submitted comments on the proposed IRS Forms 1095 A-C that will be used to determine whether individuals have minimum essential health coverage as required by the ACA and reconcile any Advance Premium Tax Credits individuals may have received. The comments encourage the IRS to release more detailed instructions on when and how consumers should use the forms and develop a streamlined system for those who file taxes electronically.

  • NHeLP Files Amicus Brief in Halbig Case

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    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program, in partnership with AARP, filed an amicus brief in the Halbig v. Burwell case defending the availability of ACA tax credits to consumers in states with a federally facilitated marketplace (FFM). The case is set for en banc review before the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals on December 17th.

  • NHeLP Welcomes Review of Halbig v. Burwell

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    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program (NHeLP) issued a press release in support of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia’s (D.C.) decision to grant an en banc review of the Halbig v. Burwell case. The decision to bring the case before the 11 judge panel vacates the 2-1 decision issued by the D.C. Circuit Court in July, which ruled that ACA tax credits were only available to consumers in state-run Marketplaces. Elizabeth Taylor, executive director for NHeLP stated, “We welcome the Court’s grant of en banc review…The Court…now has the opportunity to interpret the statute based on the full text, consistent with Congress’ intent, just as the Fourth Circuit did.”

  • NHeLP Comments on Annual Redetermination Process for 2015

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    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program submitted comments to CMS on the proposed regulations and sub-regulatory guidance released on annual redeterminations. The comments propose recommendations about renewal processes for individuals enrolled in Qualified Health Plans, propose alternative renewal procedures, and provide guidance on Marketplace renewal notices. KidsWell grantee, Community Service Society of New York (CSS), signed onto the comments. 

  • KidsWell Partners Issue Statements on ACA Appeals Court Rulings on Subsidies

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    NHeLP, YI, & FL: The National Health Law Program (NHeLP) and Young Invincibles issued statements in response to the Halbig v. Burwell ruling that ACA subsidies are only available to consumers in state-run Marketplaces. Florida CHAIN issued a statement explaining the immediate impact of the ruling. NHeLP also issued a statement praising the unanimous opinion in King v. Burwell that upheld the ACA’s subsidies in state-run Marketplaces.

  • NHeLP Comments on Draft Marketplace Renewal Issuer Notices

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    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program (NHeLP) sent comments to CMS on its June 26th “Insurance Standards Bulletin Series” which contained draft notices that issuers must provide to Qualified Health Plan (QHP) enrollees as part of the redetermination process. The comments recommend simplifying notice language to be more consumer friendly and separating notices that contain generalized information from those containing personalized information or requiring consumer action. NHeLP also recommended that issuer notices conform with accessibility requirements and that CMS create a notice development checklist for State-Based Marketplaces. KidsWell grantee, Community Service Society of New York (CSS), and other advocates joined the comment letter.  

  • NHeLP Publishes ACA Litigation Primer

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    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program released a newsletter highlighting ongoing ACA litigation.  The newsletter summarizes major cases seeking to: repeal the ACA; strike down the contraceptive coverage requirement; and enforce specific ACA provisions.
  • CCF & NHeLP To Host State Partner Call on Pregnant Women Coverage

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    CCF & NHeLP:  The Georgetown Center for Children and Families, the National Health Law Program, and the National Women’s Law Center will co-host a State Partner call on June 17, 2014 to discuss coverage for pregnant women under the ACA.

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