“Under ObamaCare, modest-wage earners face a choice: Pay premiums they probably can’t afford or pay a bit less for policies with deductibles so high it makes them queasy. The good news is that the initial ObamaCare premiums for the California market, heralded by state officials last week as ‘a home run for consumers,’ do appear to be somewhat lower than outside actuaries had warned. The bad news is that the design of ObamaCare’s subsidies still threatens to keep the young and healthy uninsured, driving up premiums for everybody else.”

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“California’s health insurance rates for a new state-run marketplace came in lower than expected this week, but one downside for many consumers will be far fewer doctors and hospitals to choose from. People who want UCLA Medical Center and its doctors in their health plan network next year, for instance, may have only one choice in California’s exchange: Anthem Blue Cross. Another major insurer in the state-run market, Blue Shield of California, said its exchange customers will be restricted to 36% of its regular physician network statewide. And Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, one of Southern California’s most prestigious and expensive hospitals, said it’s not included in any exchange plans at the moment.”

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“As the director of the California exchange put it, ‘These rates are way below the worst-case gloom-and-doom scenarios we have heard.’ But a few days later there is lots more information coming out and it would appear we have a case of apples to oranges to grapefruit. And, we have a pretty good case of rate shock.”

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“The National Association of Insurance Commissioners says it is hearing that many carriers will cancel policies and issue new ones because administratively that is easier than changing existing plans. About 14 million Americans currently purchase their health policies individually, a number expected to more than double eventually because of the new law’s subsidies and one-stop insurance markets. But the transition may not be seamless.”

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“Supporters of Obamacare justified passage of the law because one insurer in California raised rates on some people by as much as 39 percent. But Obamacare itself more than doubles the cost of insurance on the individual market. I can understand why Democrats in California would want to mislead the public on this point. But journalists have a professional responsibility to check out the facts for themselves.”

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“Health insurance premiums could rise by as much as 40 percent as a result of President Obama’s healthcare law, according to a new study. The survey of premiums in six states found that premiums could increase most significantly for young, healthy men. Premiums will rise for people who currently purchase bare-bones plans with high deductibles and meager coverage. They’ll be forced to upgrade to policies that must offer at least a certain level of coverage.”

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“Some labor unions that enthusiastically backed President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul are now frustrated and angry, fearful that it will jeopardize benefits for millions of their members. Union leaders warn that unless the problem is fixed, there could be consequences for Democrats facing re-election next year.”

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“Two online health calculators designed by federal officials to help states and employers comply with Obamacare mandates are riddled with so many flaws that users are abandoning them, The Washington Examiner has learned. Users say the calculators – one used by state officials, the other by private employers – too often are confusing, produce contradictory results, do not reflect real world conditions, and use old data.”

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“What this means, however, is that Covered California is creating for itself a very favorable and already higher baseline from which to compare next year’s individual health insurance premiums. That’s how they’re able to create the appearance that Obamacare’s reforms will lower individual premiums. To put it simply: Covered California is trying to make consumers think they’re getting more for less when, in fact, they’re just getting the same while paying more.”

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“You’ve heard of the ‘fog of war.’ Well, now we’ve got the fog of Obamacare. The controversial Affordable Care Act (ACA) has so many moving parts that it’s hard to know how its implementation is proceeding.”

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