News Briefs

CMS at press time said it had approved more than 200 requests for state relief in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including recent approvals for Alaska, Iowa, Hawaii, New Jersey, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Utah and Virginia. CMS in March released a toolkit to speed the application and review of states’ requests for flexibilities, which include making temporary changes to Medicaid eligibility and benefit requirements and relaxing rules to ensure that individuals with disabilities and the elderly can be effectively served at home. Meanwhile, as part of the Trump administration’s “Opening Up America Again” plan, CMS on May 18 released guidance for nursing homes, including that they “remain in the current state of highest restriction even when a community begins to relax restrictions for other businesses.” Visit http://cms.gov/newsroom.

✦strong>Newlight Partners LP and its affiliates have made a significant equity investment in Zing Health Holdings, Inc., a physician-led Medicare Advantage HMO plan that launched last year in the Chicago area. With a focus on “populations underserved by traditional health insurance models,” the HMO was co-founded by physician and entrepreneur Eric Whitaker and Health 2047, the innovation lab of the American Medical Association. Contact Taryn Williams Clark for Zing Health at twilliams@purposebrand.com.

© 2021 MMIT

Lauren Flynn Kelly Managing Editor, Radar on Medicare Advantage

Lauren has been covering health business issues, including drug benefits and specialty pharmacy, for more than a decade. She served as editor of Drug Benefit News (the predecessor to Radar on Drug Benefits) from 2004 to 2005 and again from 2011 to 2016, and now manages Radar on Medicare Advantage. Lauren graduated from Vassar College with a B.A. in English.

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