Change attack update: What 15 payers discussed with the Biden administration

Fifteen insurers and trade groups met with Biden administration officials March 18 to discuss the industry's ongoing response to the cyberattack on Change Healthcare last month.

Ahead of the meeting, payers were asked to prepare details about how they are supporting providers financially, where challenges exist and other recovery efforts being made. According to Bloomberg, a main concern among payers around advanced funding is how money will be recuperated in the future. 

During the meeting, stakeholders discussed how progress has been made in reestablishing claims processing systems, though small, rural and safety-net providers specifically are still reporting issues with cash flow.

Many healthcare organizations will require third-party certification of Change's cybersecurity before reconnecting to its systems, in which UnitedHealth was urged to provide a timeframe around. Payers were also asked to analyze their internal data to determine which providers need more support and to engage with them directly.

According to Reuters, payers said they would accelerate payments to Medicare and Medicaid providers, along with providing loans to Medicaid providers.

On March 18, UnitedHealth said it has advanced more than $2 billion to providers and is launching a medical claims preparation program over the next several days.

As of March 7, the company has restored 99% of pharmacy network services. Change's electronic payments platform was restored March 15, with payer implementations currently underway.

On March 12, AHIP President and CEO Mike Tuffin said suspending prior authorization requirements could do more harm than good and that individual plans and providers are in the best position to assess how to maintain appropriate payments in a timely manner. 

Payers and trade groups that attended the March 18 meeting:

  • Alliance for Community Health Plans (ACHP)
  • America's Health Insurance Plans (AHIP)
  • AmeriHealth Caritas
  • Association of Community Affiliated Plans (ACAP)
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield Association (BCBSA)
  • Centene
  • The Cigna Group
  • CVS Health/Aetna
  • Elevance
  • Health Care Service Corp.
  • Humana
  • Kaiser Permanente
  • Medicaid Health Plans of America (MHPA)
  • Molina
  • UnitedHealth Group

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