ACHP Media Monitoring Report: May 3, 2017

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Upton changes vote on health care bill
Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI) has drafted an amendment that would create an $8 billion fund to help patients with pre-existing conditions pay for high-cost premiums. With the inclusion of this amendment, Upton, who previously opposed the Republican health care bill, would agree to vote in favor of the measure.

A new poll released this morning shows that half of all voters oppose allowing states to opt out of protections, and a majority oppose letting states loosen health benefits.

Administration undecided on CSRs
White House Budget Chief Mick Mulvaney said that the Administration is still undecided if it will fund cost-sharing reduction payments this month. Absence of the payments could lead to insurers leaving the exchanges.

Technology to transform health care system
According to experts, health care will increasingly take place outside of a doctor’s office. Wearables and mobile devices will assist in clinical decisions, and hospitals have already begun investing in telehealth. The influence of technology could lead to a shift in labor demands as well as changes to the physical makeup of hospitals.

Aetna exits ACA market
Aetna is scaling back its involvement in ACA exchanges for 2018, citing expected losses as the reason for the decision. Aetna had previously reduced its presence in the individual market from 15 markets to four, and has now said it will also leave Iowa’s exchange. Aetna will remain in Delaware, Nebraska and Virginia.

Molina fires CEO and CFO
Molina Healthcare’s Board of Directors has fired CEO Dr. J. Mario Molina and CFO John Molina due to poor financial performance. The company was still profitable, but saw tighter margins due to ACA plans. Molina has been one of the most outspoken proponents of the ACA.

California bill could help Medi-Cal patients secure housing
California is looking to save money by helping Medi-Cal recipients afford housing and reduce trips to the emergency room. A measure under consideration would allot an additional $90 million over five years to subsidize housing for homeless Medi-Cal beneficiaries.