Affordable Care Act

kansaspublicradio.org

Premiums in the federal health insurance Marketplace are slightly higher, on average, compared to last year, but not in Kansas.  KPR's Bryan Thompson reports Kansas is bucking the trend.

The Affordable Care Act open enrollment period is underway.  KUT reported one of the barriers stopping people from getting coverage can be summed up in three words: health insurance literacy.  Here are the cliff notes for health insurance terms:

A HMO requires you to pick a primary physician.  That person will become your health home, and any services you want have to be approved by that physician.

newportacademy.com

A new report from the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services says Kansans on Medicare will save more than $10 million this year on prescription drugs, thanks to one of the lesser-known provisions of the Affordable Care Act reported Bryan Thompson for Kansas Public Radio

alexmandossian.com

One of the lesser-known parts of the Affordable Care Act is about to put some money back into the pockets of nearly 60,000 Kansas families.  The refunds will total $3.6 million reported Bryan Thompson for Kansas Public Radio.

roberts.senate.gov

Republican U.S. Senator Pat Roberts recently signed a pledge sponsored by the conservative women’s organization, Independent Women’s Voice.  The pledge is to repeal, defund and dismantle the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare blogged Peter Hancock for the Lawrence Journal-World.

tacticalminc.com

In Kansas, The Kansas Health Institute recently reported that more than 10,000 Kansans applied or Medicaid or CHIP (Children’s Health Insurance Program) in January.  That is an increase of 20% over the monthly average since the Affordable Care Act’s insurance marketplace was launched.

sostadiumstatus.blogspot.com

Colorado has expanded the Medicaid program, as part of the state’s implementation of the Affordable Care Act.  That means tens of thousands of new Medicaid patients will have access to healthcare.  Proponents of the Affordable Care Act say that getting more people insured will cut down on emergency room visits, but a recent study shows that is not what happened in Oregon according to a recent conversation on Colorado Matters from Colorado Public Radio.

KERA

While the individual mandate requires ever American to have health insurance, there is a big exception to the Affordable Care Act that more and more people are taking advantage of.

hipstercrite.com

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius recently announced enrollment numbers for the federal and state online health insurance marketplaces that opened Oct. 1.  106,185 people in the United States have selected insurance plans during this period. 

Huelskamp: A tactical change on Obamacare

Nov 11, 2013
J.M. EDDINS, JR./MCT

The same man who was pushing to shut down the government just a few weeks ago to defund the Affordable Care Act, now says another government shutdown to stop funding for ACA isn’t likely to happen in January according to a recent Politico story

The reason why the Affordable Care Act, or ACA, was designed is just as important as the what the law does says Sheldon Weisgrau, senior consultant with Rural Health Consultants.  Weisgrau recently spoke at the NAACP Annual Freedom Fund according to the Salina Journal

Affordable Care Act: New Premium Calculator

Oct 21, 2013
moaablogs.org

The Obama administration recently released a new online tool that allows users to see premium estimates by state, level of coverage, and age categories without creating an account.  Previously, an account had to be created before individuals could see what plans were available and what premiums would be according to the Kansas Health Institute.

Michael Schumacher / AGN Media

The Amarillo Area Foundation recently hosted a symposium hoping to provide answers many have about the Affordable Care Act which many have dubbed Obamacare. Health care providers, administrators, business owners, and other citizens came to find out more according to the Amarillo Globe News.

Millions Left Without Despite Affordable Care Act

Oct 3, 2013
nytimes.com

A sweeping national effort to extend health coverage to millions of Americans will leave out two-thirds of the poor blacks and single mothers and more than half of the low-wage workers who do not have insurance, the very kinds of people that the program was intended to help, according to an analysis of census data by The New York Times.

The Obama administration released a report containing average premiums across the nation.  Rates in most states are lower than earlier projections, but there are huge variations among states according to the Kansas Health Institute

Obamacare could be a tough sell in rural America

Sep 20, 2013
Grant Gerlock/Harvest Public Media

The Affordable Care Act, often called “Obamacare,” takes a big step forward Oct. 1 when new health insurance marketplaces open for enrollment. Rural families are more likely to qualify for subsidized coverage, but reaching them to sign up will be part of the challenge.

So, will farm country take advantage of new health insurance subsidies? That’s the question in Nebraska.

Almost 200,000 Nebraskans don’t have health insurance. Nearly half of them are spread across the state’s rural areas.

texastribune.org

Once again, estimates recently released by U.S. Census Bureau say Texas has the most uninsured in the nation according to a recent article from The Texas Tribune.    

Affordable Care Act: Texas, Where did the Money Go?

Sep 11, 2013
photo illustration Todd Wiseman / texastribune.org

Texas has received almost $100 million in grants through the federal Affordable Care Act.  Despite strong opposition to the new law by state leaders, and even an effort to defund the measure by U.S. Senator Ted Cruz, a majority of the grants have already been spent or will be by the end of the month according to The Texas Tribune.

Affordable Care Act Texas: New York Times Sounds Off

Sep 10, 2013
texastribune.org

A recent report from the U.S. Census Bureau revealed there are a significant percentage of Texans without health insurance.  Texas state leaders have been some of the most resistant in the nation to provide coverage for the uninsured under the Affordable Care Act according to a recent editorial in the New York Times.

summacare.com

As October 1 is just a few weeks away, there seems to be even more confusion about the Affordable Care Act than ever.  According to a recent KUT article, it’s not only consumers who are perplexed by the program, but medical providers are too.

Uninsured: How things look on the high plains

Sep 1, 2013
michaudinsurance.com

The latest report from the U.S. Census Bureau reveals the percentage of uninsured people under the age of 65. 

Here’s how things look on the high plains:

  • Colorado: 17%
  • Kansas: 14.4%
  • Oklahoma: 21.8%
  • Texas: 25.7%

Area Hospitals Penalized for Readmissions

Aug 21, 2013
gstaadlife.com

The Texas Tribune recently reported the federal government is working to pay for better performance, and penalizing hospitals that have the highest rates of Medicare patients who are readmitted within 30 days of receiving treatment for heart failure, heart attacks, or pneumonia.  As part of the Affordable Care Act, hospitals can be penalized up to 1% of Medicare payment rates for all procedures this year, and up to 2% next. 

There are a number of factors making it hard for rural hospitals to make ends meet. Colorado Matters explores those issues, as well as the effects of sequestration and the Affordable Care Act. Listen to the podcast.

High Plains States: Obamacare Grant Recipients

Aug 18, 2013
lerablog.org

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services awarded a total of $67 million “navigator” grants to more than 100 organizations across the country recently reported the Kansas Health Institute.  “Navigators will be among the many resources available to help consumers understand their coverage options in the Marketplace,” said HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius according to The Texas Tribune