GOP chairman, HHS' Azar in talks to restart ACA's $10.4B risk-adjustment payments

Rep. Kevin Brady, R-Texas, chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, was reportedly in talks with HHS Secretary Alex Azar on July 16 to restart the ACA's risk-adjustment payments, according to The Hill.

The payments, which level the playing field among insurers selling policies on the ACA's exchanges, were suspended July 7 after a federal court in New Mexico ruled the formula to determine fund distribution was flawed. The move has gotten pushback from payers, physician groups, Democrats and now Republican leadership.

Mr. Brady said HHS wants to restore the payments, according to The Hill. The House could force the issue by including it in healthcare legislation that is up for a vote next week, but Mr. Brady could not confirm if representatives would include it in the bills.

"We're continuing to engage with the secretary and others on this," he said, according to the report. Insurers and some legal experts believe the administration has the authority to restart the payments on its own, according to The Hill.

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