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Obamacare: Payers Use Plain Language

Choosing and understanding health coverage may become as easy as buying cereal thanks to an element of health reform.

Patients will receive straightforward language about what their health plans will cover beginning this Sept., a benefit of the Affordable Care Act- commonly called Obamacare - the Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) announced Feb. 8 in a Final Rule.

The new rules require health insurer to eliminate technical or confusing language from marketing materials to prospective members. Two forms required to be given to shoppers and members at important points in the enrollment process, such as application and renewal are a Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC) and a uniform glossary of terms.

The agency says a key feature of the SBC is a standardized plan comparison tool called "coverage examples" similar to the Nutrition Facts label for packaged foods. The forms were developed with the assistance of local, national, industry, and regulatory organizations.

Tags: Practice Management Access to Care HHS Physician Reimbursement