Regulators will ease some Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) rules for college and university student health plans, but they intend to subject the plans to the new minimum medical loss ratio (MLR) requirements by 2014.
Regulators also intend to make the issuers report student health performance on a calendar-year basis, rather than an academic year basis.
But insurers can report student health plan business on a national basis and separately from the results for other individual market coverage, officials at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), an arm of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), say in a Student Health Insurance Coverage final rule.
The final rule, based on temporary regulations released in February 2011, is set to appear in the Federal Register Wednesday and take effect 30 days later.
Most of the provisions, including regulations phasing in changes in rules on matters such as guaranteed renewability and annual benefits limits, would start to take effect July 1. The MLR reporting provisions would apply starting Jan. 1, 2013.
CMS officials said PPACA limits their flexibility in some cases.
In the section on the minimum MLR rules, for example, officials acknowledge that some commenters have asked them to change for the federal MLR minimum for student plans.
Insurers, brokers and plan administrators told officials typical student health plan MLRs range from 65% to 82%.