A selection of health policy stories from Colorado, California, the District of Columbia and New York.
The Denver Post: Colorado Targets Misleading Marketing For Limited Benefit Health Plans
Central United Life Insurance Co.'s brochure sold platinum and gold plans, using the same language as the Affordable Care Act policies. But the policy didn't qualify as an ACA-compliant policy, and while the sales document noted it was not major medical coverage, the Colorado Division of Insurance is concerned about the sales tactics of some limited-benefit plans. On April 3, the division issued a bulletin to insurers, saying they can't sell plans using ACA terms such as "gold" and "platinum," and must clearly identify these as noncompliant plans (Kane, 5/21).
Los Angeles Times: San Francisco Supervisors Get Behind Laura’s Law Mental Health Program
A dozen years after state passage of Laura's Law -- which allowed counties to set up programs mandating outpatient treatment of the severely mentally ill -- San Francisco supervisors Tuesday vowed to take the matter to voters if a board majority does not approve one by summer. The law approved in 2002 was named for Nevada County's Laura Wilcox, who was killed by a man who had been refusing treatment when he entered the county's behavioral health offices and opened fire (Romney, 5/20).
The Washington Post: District Age-In-Place Program Faces Shutdown
But the program that brought them there -- Home First, which is run by the nonprofit Seabury Resources for Aging -- says that under the proposed city budget, it might not have enough money next year to continue its 20-year-old age-in-place component, which provides regular home help to about 300 older District residents in wards 4 and 5 (Bahrampopur, 5/29).
The Denver Post: Feds Approve Colorado Plan Intended To Lower Rural Health Premiums
The federal government has approved Colorado's plan to consolidate several geographic rating areas used to determine health insurance premiums, which officials hope will reduce consumer costs in mountain and rural areas. The state Division of Insurance said Monday that the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services approved its request to change the rating areas Thursday. The rating areas will be reduced to nine from 11 (5/19).
The Associated Press: Senate Democrats Reintroduce Women’s Rights Bills
A series of bills dubbed the Women's Equality Act were reintroduced Tuesday in the New York Senate after the package was derailed last year over a contentious late-term abortion proposal (5/20).