Here’s a link to The Week in Congress’s account of this week’s activities on Capitol Hill. Congress is back at it next Monday.
This afternoon, the ACA regulators announced that the finalization of the revised summary of benefits and coverage rule. The SBC of course is the ACA’s approach to creating transparency in health insurance shopping and the FEHBlog actually has seen one person use the SBCs for that purpose. It is unfortunate but not surprising that the ACA did not require doctors to provide information about, for example, the networks in which they participate, New York State recently implemented a no healthcare surprises law which does impose this requirement on providers.
The next SBC shoe to drop is the release of revised versions of the templates which, according to the announcement, are expected next year. The new templates would be used for the 2017 plan year.
The OPM data breach is now being referred to as a cyber Pearl Harbor by FCW. Here are recent reports from the the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, and Wired magazine which illustrate the aptness of the description, The FEHBlog was stunned by this Wall Street Journal report referenced in the Wired article:
“[F]our people familiar with the investigation said the breach was actually discovered during a mid-April sales demonstration at OPM by a Virginia company called CyTech Services, which has a networks forensics platform called CyFIR. CyTech, trying to show OPM how its cybersecurity product worked, ran a diagnostics study on OPM’s network and discovered malware was embedded on the network. Investigators believe the hackers had been in the network for a year or more.”