Payer Roundup—Amazon now accepting consumers’ FSA, HSA

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Amazon will now accept FSA and HSA card payments for medical supplies. (Amazon)

Amazon now accepting consumers’ FSA, HSA

Amazon’s latest step in the healthcare space is an announcement that it will now accept flexible spending account (FSA) or health savings account (HSA) cards on its site for medical supplies. 

Amazon started rolling out the program in early March, which coincides with the company adding more health and wellness products to its website. 

Healthcare analysts say this is a smart move by Amazon as it gives the e-commerce giant more data on consumer purchasing behavior as it moves further into the space, perhaps even eyeing prescription drugs at some point. (CNBC)

AHIP letter to Congress asks for protection from surprise medical bills

America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP) crafted a letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other House leaders on behalf of health insurance providers, asking Congress to pass legislation this year that will protect patients from surprise medical bills. 

Some of the requests for the proposal include prohibiting physicians from sending surprise bills in case of emergency or when a patient had no choice in their provider. The letter also asks that facilities be required to inform patients of their doctors’ network status and consent for out-of-network care. It also asked for setting reimbursement rates, ensuring that these protections apply to all health plans, and avoiding the use of costly arbitration that can keep consumers stuck in the middle. 

The letter was also signed by 17 organizations in total including the American Benefits Council, Blue Cross Blue Shield Association and National Alliance of Healthcare Purchaser Coalitions. (FierceHealthcare)

Just over 13,000 don’t meet Arkansas work requirement for healthcare coverage

More than 13,000 people failed to comply with Medicaid work requirements in Arkansas, leaving more than 6,400 vulnerable to losing coverage because they failed to satisfy the rules for three months in a row.

As of February, additional Arkansas residents are subject to specific work requirements in order to receive government-funded healthcare insurance. More than 116,200 Arkansas Works enrollees were subject to the new requirement, but a majority, 102,856 people, were already meeting the requirement due to work, training or other exceptions, according to new data from state officials. 

Of the enrollees whose coverage ended in 2018, 1,910 have applied for coverage in 2019. As many as 30% of those who lost coverage did so because they failed to return requested information. (Arkansas Department of Human Services—PDF)