Comment on Prescription Drug and Health Care Spending Interim Final Rule (January 22, 2022)

Health Care

The Church Alliance submitted a comment letter to the Department of Health and Human Services on January 22, 2022 in response to request for comment on the Prescription Drug and Health Care Spending Interim Final Rules.  The interim final rules were issued jointly with the Department of Labor, Department of Treasury, and the Office of Personnel Management and would require extensive reporting regarding prescription drug costs and other health services by market segment, employer size, state, and amount of employee premium.

The Church Alliance reiterated its belief that Congress intended to exempt church plans from the reporting requirement by enacting an exemption for church plans in the Public Health Service Act.  However, since the PHSA does not apply to self-funded group health plans, the Church Alliance requested the Department of Treasury to take a non-enforcement approach or make a limited exemption with respect to the reporting requirements for self-funded church plans.

In the event that temporary non-enforcement or a limited exemption is not given, the Church Alliance pointed out the many issues that church plans would face given the multiple employers in the plans, lack of access to information from the multiple TPAs and PBMs, and lack of clarity around how TPAs or PBMs would report on a church plan’s behalf.