Guidance Issued by the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and the Treasury
President Biden announced on February 10, 2023, that he anticipated terminating the COVID-19 National Emergency on May 11, 2023, and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Becerra has advised that the COVID-19 public health emergency will also end on May 11, 2023.
The Department of Labor’s Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) is committed to working with employers and other plan sponsors to ensure a smooth transition as the federal government unwinds some of the policies that have been in place during the COVID-19 public health emergency and National Emergency. To partner with you through this process, the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and the Treasury issued guidance today in an effort to ensure that workers and their families are aware of any changes that may be coming their way:
FAQs Part 58 – addresses how the end of the public health emergency affects requirements to cover COVID-19 diagnostic testing and vaccines, as well as how the end of the national emergency affects extensions of certain time frames for employee benefit plans and their participants and families.
Medicaid-CHIP SEP Options Flyer – important information that you can share with individuals who may lose their Medicaid or Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) coverage after March 31, 2023.
BenefitMall encourages plan sponsors and employers to review this information carefully. If you make any changes to your plan or coverage after the end of the public health emergency or National Emergency, be sure to communicate these changes, including any limitations on benefits, clearly to participants and beneficiaries before they take effect. While the end of the public health emergency and National Emergency signal a positive development in many ways, it can also be a time of confusion and uncertainty for your employees and participants. Consider amending your plan to extend existing timeframes to minimize the possibility of individuals losing their benefits.
You may also receive special enrollment requests from individuals losing Medicaid or CHIP coverage who may be interested in participating in their employment-based health coverage. Consider amending your plan to provide additional time for those individuals to exercise their special enrollment rights.
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