federal health law

House Republicans Unveil Long-Awaited Plan To Replace Health Law

Jun 22, 2016
(http://abetterway.speaker.gov)

Six years after promising a plan to “repeal and replace” the federal health law, House Republicans are finally ready to deliver.

Are Medicare ACOs Working? Experts Disagree

Oct 21, 2015

One of the missions of the 2010 federal health law is to slow the soaring cost of health care. A key strategy for Medicare is encouraging doctors, hospitals and other health care providers to form accountable care organizations (ACOs) to coordinate beneficiaries’ care and provide services more efficiently.

Study: 19 Million Uninsured If Law Repealed

Jun 22, 2015
U.S. Supreme Court

Repealing the federal health law would add an additional 19 million to the ranks of the uninsured in 2016 and increase the federal deficit over the next decade, the Congressional Budget Office said Friday.

HealthCare.gov

Several million Americans hit with new federal fines for going without health insurance are getting a second chance to sign up, and that could ease the sting of rising penalties for being uninsured.

But as the enrollment window reopened on Sunday in Florida and the 36 other states that use the federal health insurance marketplace at HealthCare.gov, it’s unclear how many know about the time-limited opportunity, let alone will take advantage of it.

The deadline to buy health insurance coverage for 2015 has come and gone. But some people without insurance are just finding out now that they have to pay a tax penalty, and they're getting another chance to sign up.

Federal health officials announced Friday morning that they’re offering a new, special open enrollment period for consumers who are preparing their 2014 taxes now and figuring out that they owe a tax penalty under the Affordable Care Act.

This extra time will be for consumers to buy coverage for 2015, and avoid paying a penalty when they file their 2015 taxes.

The state-run health insurance marketplace Florida Health Choices has enrolled just 66 people despite spending $75,000 on outreach efforts, the Palm Beach Post reports. 

 A ZIP code in Hialeah has had more people enroll in a health plan on HealthCare.gov than any other place in the country using the federal exchange, the Miami Herald reports. As of mid-January, 12,330 people in Hialeah’s 33012 ZIP Code had signed up for an insurance plan.

Nearly 2.5M In FL, 36 Other States Pick Plans on HealthCare.gov

Dec 17, 2014

More than 1 million people selected a health plan during the fourth week of the health law’s open enrollment and nearly 2.5 million have done so since it began Nov. 15, federal officials said Tuesday.

“And this was before an extremely busy weekend,” said Andy Slavitt, principal deputy administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, which oversees the federal online marketplace used by 37 states.

Tuesday’s report did not include enrollment for the final three days before the Dec. 15 deadline for people to enroll if they want coverage to begin Jan. 1.

It's the second year of enrollment for health insurance plans under the federal health law on HealthCare.gov, the website that Floridians, and people in dozens of other states, use to shop for health insurance.

As of Dec. 15, we have passed a key deadline, the deadline to buy a plan to have coverage that starts Jan. 1. But open enrollment runs through Feb. 15, 2015, and we have gathered a panel to talk about what consumers be doing now if they still need to get health insurance coverage to comply with the federal health law known as Obamacare.

ACA Health Premiums Up 10-15% in FL

Nov 17, 2014

The average monthly premiums for Affordable Care Act "silver plans" increased by double digits in most Florida counties for 2015, according to an Associated Press analysis.

In their analysis, AP reporters Mike Schneider in Orlando and Kelli Kennedy in Miami  compared premiums after averaging them for all silver plans, without taking subsidies into account. 

More than 35,000 Florida residents have lost the health insurance they enrolled in under the federal health law because they didn’t prove U.S. citizenship or legal residency status by Sept. 5, the Miami Herald reports. 

CHIP Future Unclear Under Health Law

Sep 18, 2014

The Children’s Health Insurance Program, a joint federal-state program known as CHIP, has helped cut in half the number of uninsured children since being enacted less than two decades ago, but its future is in doubt due to limited funding in the federal health law of 2010.  A year from now, CHIP will run out of money.  Some advocates for the program want the federal government to finance CHIP for another four years, while other experts have suggested two would suffice.  The Senate Finance Committee’s Subcommittee on Health Care will hold a hearing on the issue Tuesday.

Some people refuse to buy insurance that complies with the Affordable Care Act for political reasons. Others simply don't think it's really affordable.

The New York Times reports that a growing number of them have turned to the religious loophole in the health law. Two of those profiled are Florida women who are members of a faith-based nonprofit called Christian Healthcare Ministries.

AP

FREEPORT  — In this rural part of the Panhandle, Christopher Mitchell finds few takers when he delivers his message about the importance of exploring insurance options under the federal health overhaul. 

Lynn Hatter/WFSU / WFSU

Thirty or so attendees at St. Mary Primitive Baptist Church in Tallahassee, Fla., gathered on a recent evening to hear a presentation by the Obamacare Enrollment Team on their options to get insurance under the Affordable Care Act. 

"If anybody is interested in getting enrolled, we can get you enrolled tonight," they were told.

Signs outside the church looked official: A familiar, large "O" with a blue outline, white center and three red stripes.

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius was on the University of South Florida Tampa campus Thursday afternoon to hand out $7.8 million in grants to help Floridians with the Affordable Care Act. 

The money will be given to eight organizations around the state to hire staff to help consumers enroll in a health insurance plan. Starting Jan. 1, almost all Americans will be required to buy health insurance under the ACA.

University of South Florida will receive the lion's share of "Navigator Grants" being issued for Florida, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is to make the announcement at USF at noon.

The list of grants released for Florida totals around $7.8 million -- more than the $5.8 million that had been expected.

PolitiFact

In a letter to U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Democratic members of Congress from Florida accuse the state of relinquishing power over health insurance rates to the federal government -- which lacks enforcement authority.

Associated Press

Members of the all-Republican Florida Cabinet -- Gov. Rick Scott, Attorney General Pam Bondi, Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam and Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater -- have approved disclosure forms that insurance companies will need to send out to policyholders if their premiums will be affected by the federal Affordable Care Act, the Times/Herald Tallahassee Bureau reports.

Lottie Watts / WUSF

We asked our readers to tell us what they thought was confusing about the Affordable Care Act, and you called, e-mailed and Facebooked us with questions. On Florida Matters, WUSF’s Craig Kopp sits down with attorney Linda Fleming of Carlton Fields; Julian Lago, the regional vice president of the National Association of Health Underwriters, and Health News Florida Editor Carol Gentry to help answer some of those questions. 

To listen to the complete show, visit the Florida Matters website

Chris Zuppa / Tampa Bay Times

With Congress on a five-week break, House Republicans left Washington bearing a playbook for themselves and talking points for business owners who may want to speak at public forums on the Affordable Care Act, the Tampa Bay Times reports.  Democrats say they’re prepared to go toe-to-toe defending the law. 

Gerd Altmann

When it comes to the Affordable Care Act, there's a ton of confusion. At Health News Florida, we're here to help you get the answers you need.

We'd like to get your questions for an upcoming Florida Matters, WUSF's weekly public affairs show.

Finding uninsured people and helping them enroll in health plans through the new online marketplace -- set to open Oct. 1 -- will be hard. If they don't speak English, it will likely be harder still.

It presents an extra hurdle in states like California, Texas and Florida, as Kaiser Health News reports.

AP

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio held a press conference at GatorLand, an Orlando tourist attraction, on Friday to denounce the Affordable Care Act for putting the employer in the position of offering more comprehensive coverage or laying people off. But the Rubio press release didn’t really explain why the premiums will go up. 

Associated Press

After weeks of bruising attacks on the Affordable Care Act by House Republicans and other opponents, Democrats Thursday retaliated with a one-two punch.

As with any newly implemented government programs, myths and half-truths abound about the Affordable Health Act.  What’s true and what isn’t when it comes to "Obamacare"?  Here’s a short Q&A from the South Florida Sun-Sentinel on the Affordable Health Act.

Kaiser Health News’ Michelle Andrews responds to reader questions about how different provisions of the Affordable Care Act will affect employer-sponsored insurance and Medigap coverage. 

Ten Florida health insurers have filed documents indicating they want to compete for shoppers on the Affordable Care Act marketplace when it opens Oct. 1, state records indicate.  However, it is not clear whether all of them will follow through or receive federal approval.

The list has not been released by the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation (OIR) nor the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Health insurance deductibles typically only go one direction: up.

It's not unusual for people these days to be responsible for paying thousands of dollars in medical claims before most plan benefits kick in.

Scammers Find Fertile Ground In Health Law

Apr 22, 2013

One recent morning, Evelyne Lois Such was sitting at her kitchen table in Denver when the phone rang. Such, who's 86, didn't recognize the phone number or the deep voice on the other end of the line.

"He asked, 'Are you a senior?' and I said yes, and he said, 'Well, we are sending out all new Medicare cards, and I want to make sure I have all your statistics just correct,' " Such recalls.

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