Washington Update

Millions Could Gain Dental Coverage Through the Affordable Care Act

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With the inclusion of pediatric oral health services as an essential benefit under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), millions of children are poised to gain dental coverage over the next five years. Some adults will also receive dental benefits as the law is implemented.

The American Dental Association (ADA) estimates that 8.7 million... Click Here To Read More

Stricter Gainful Employment Rules May be on the Horizon

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In order to participate in federal student aid programs, the Higher Education Act (HEA) requires career education programs to “prepare students for gainful employment in a recognized occupation.” Under gainful employment regulations, Title IV loans can only be disbursed to eligible students enrolled in programs that lead to gainful employment in a... Click Here To Read More

Democrats Split Over House Health Insurance Bill

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By a wide margin, the House of Representatives passed legislation that would give insurance companies one more year to sell policies that do not meet the requirements of the Affordable Care Act. The House bill, formally known... Click Here To Read More

Reaction to Administration’s Fix for Cancelled Health Policies

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Insurers and state insurance regulators, caught off guard by President Obama’s November 14 announcement that insurance companies could temporarily keep people on policies that had been slated for cancellation, were still assessing the impact of the order several days later, CQ HealthBeat News reported. Obama held a closed-door meeting... Click Here To Read More

Senate Challenges Use of Military Benefits by For-Profit Colleges

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For the second time in two years, Congress is trying to close a loophole critics say is used by for-profit colleges to target veterans and the generous Department of Defense (DOD) tuition grants they receive. Federal law prohibits for-profit colleges from receiving more than 90% of their funding from federal financial aid programs that are part of... Click Here To Read More

Senate Approves the Children’s Hospital Graduate Medical Education Payment Program Reauthorization

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The Senate passed by unanimous consent legislation (S.1557) that would reauthorize funds for the Children’s Hospital Graduate Medical Education (CHGME) Payment Program through fiscal year 2018. The bipartisan Children’s Hospital... Click Here To Read More

Calls for Continued Funding of the Prevention and Public Health Fund

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A national group of leaders from the cancer treatment, research and business communities has called on congressional budget leaders to continue to fund the Prevention and Public Health Fund at current levels, and not divert monies to other uses. The fund was established as part of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to provide sustained national... Click Here To Read More

Accountable Care Organizations May be Required to Assume Some Financial Risk

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Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) work by making a group of providers jointly accountable for their patients’ health across care settings. The model encourages care coordination to improve patient health and save money by avoiding unnecessary tests and procedures. The ACO model has gained the attention of some oral health care providers as a... Click Here To Read More

Murthy Nominated as U.S. Surgeon General

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President Obama has nominated a new Surgeon General of the United States, Dr. Vivek Hallegere Murthy, who co-founded and is president of Doctors for America. The group of 16,000 physicians and medical students advocate for the Affordable Care Act and other legislation aimed at improving health. It was originally known as Doctors for Obama when it... Click Here To Read More

Looking Forward—What’s on the Congressional Agenda

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In the coming weeks, Congress needs to replace the current Continuing Resolution (CR) (P.L. 113-46) that will expire on January 15. There is still movement around negotiating a deal to re-do the automatic spending cuts under... Click Here To Read More
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