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LEGISLATIVE SUMMIT | AUG. 3 - 6, 2015

The Legislative Summit is where Republicans and Democrats come together to work on the nation's pressing issues, share experiences and influence federal policy. Attendees have the opportunity to attend interactive sessions and connect with legislative colleagues from around the country. The 2015 Legislative Summit will be held August 3-6 in Seattle.

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PRESCRIPTION DRUG DATABASE - APR. 28

DRUG BOTTLESUse this new, 2015 state legislative database to learn about and analyze what states are considering and enacting in current topic areas of prescription drugs. The 800+ bill listings include specialty pharmaceuticals, biologics, access and state roles in regulating safety and compounding pharmacies, across all 50 states and D.C. So far 82 bills have been enacted or signed, in 24 states; four states also adopted resolutions, as of 4/28/2015.

 

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Update of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) poverty guidelines used as an eligibility criterion by the Community Services Block Grant program and a number of other Federal programs.

HEALTH EXCHANGES: 2015 PLAN RESULTS

The second year open enrollment period for private insurance plans offered through state and federal marketplaces ran for three months starting Nov. 15, plus a new HHS authorized extension to April 30. Preliminary results show nearly 11.7 million enrolled. Individuals with qualifying events such as a marriage, job change, birth or move out of state still may enroll between now and November 2015. NCSL's report has 2015 legislation, 50-state enrollment, health plans and pricing, plus legislative history. [Updated 4/7/2015]

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OVERVIEW | HEALTH

Health costs account for about one-third of state budgets, ranging from financing Medicaid, to paying for state employees and other populations, such as prisoners. State legislatures make thousands of health policy decisions each year, including improving access to appropriate care, determining who should be immunized, licensing health professionals and facilities, and supporting or rejecting initiatives to keep people healthy. NCSL's web site provides health reports and updates listed by 50+ topics, on the right-hand column.

The Affordable Care Act of 2010 (ACA) brings substantial changes to the health care system. The Health Insurance Exchanges or Marketplaces opened for enrollment in all 50 states on October 1, 2013; year two enrollment is extended to April 30.  So far, 28 states opted to expand Medicaid for adults with incomes up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level.  In addition, the law put in place new health insurance regulations that affect premium rates, enrollee assistance and appeals and coverage for people with preexisting conditions and young adults added to family policies, among other things. 

NCSL Legislation Databases: State legislatures considered more than 2,500 bills that relate to the ACA since its passage, leading to 500+ signed into law between 2011 and 2013. For 2014 there have been another 1,194 bills considered; 235 have been signed into law or adopted as of Jan. 2015.  Plans are underway for 2015 information online.

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