Weekend update

Joe Davidson of the Washington Post reported about various organizations’ opinions on OPM’s April 7, 2010, call letter for 2011 benefit and rate proposals. NARFE strongly endorsed OPM’s request for carriers to propose sub-options that would better coordinate FEHB and Medicare primary coverage for annuitants in order to encourage them to remain in Medicare Part B.

OPM released its detailed OpenGov plan.

OPM released a letter to FEHB plan carriers concerning its health data warehouse project. As first announced in OPM’s FY 2011 budget, OPM will be collecting health plan claim and encounter data from carriers and their prescription drug managers in order to take a “holistic” approach to FEHB Program management and worksite wellness programs, among others.

A group of managed behavioral healthcare organizations, including health insurers, known as the Coalition for Parity, Inc., has filed a lawsuit in the federal district court here in DC challenging the legality of the February 2, 2010, federal regulations implementing the 2008 mental health parity act. Business Insurance reports that “The suit alleges that regulators failed to provide a “true and complete comment period [as required by the Administrative Procedure Act],” which has resulted in “confusing, flawed and untested requirements.” I agree. Here’s a link to the complaint. The presiding judge Hon. Colleen Kollar-Kotelly has ordered an expedited briefing schedule. The rule, which is discussed in OPM’s call letter, becomes applicable to the FEHB Program on January 1, 2011.