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In the Health Reform Update for the past week, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) lowers its health care spending estimate due to Affordable Care Act (ACA) cost controls. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) reverses course and exempts U.S. territories from most ACA market reforms. New Medicaid enrollments approach seven million, while CMS increases the number of states that must promptly address Medicaid application backlogs.
A consultant review of initial rate filings finds no consistent overall trend in out-of-pocket costs for 2015, although ACA plan deductibles in at least nine states are likely to be lower for all but platinum tiers.