“America’s health-care system was badly in need of reform when President Obama took office. But instead of improving America’s health-care system, the president and his allies have made matters worse. The core problem in American health care is that there is not a functional marketplace in health insurance or health services to discipline costs and promote quality and value for consumers. Rather than empower consumers or encourage the kind of innovation that could make high-quality care cheaper and more accessible, Obamacare has shifted decision-making authority from states, employers, insurers, and consumers to the federal government. This centralization of power in the federal government has already crippled the private initiative that is so essential to delivering improvements in the quality of care for patients. Obamacare’s defenders will insist that for all its flaws, it will nevertheless expand coverage.Details
“With 2015 premiums forthcoming, a major question hanging over Obamacare’s exchanges is what effect competition among insurers will have on premiums. Currently, the exchanges tend to be sparsely populated, with only 3.9 insurers competing in each rating area of the federal exchanges, on average. Indeed, whether premium increases moderate will be a major test for the health care law.”Details
“The most transparent administration in history has decided to discontinue the monthly Affordable Care Act enrollment reports now that open enrollment is closed. And why shouldn’t it? you ask. After all, open enrollment is, well, closed.”Details
“House Republicans are demanding a halt to all premium subsidies under ObamaCare until the administration can prove it is paying the correct amount in every case.
GOP members of the Ways and Means Committee pointed Wednesday to a report that hundreds of thousands of people might be receiving incorrect subsidies on the exchanges.”Details
“A new analysis from Avalere Health finds that individuals choosing an exchange plan based on premiums are most likely to consider plans from Coventry (acquired by Aetna in 2013), Humana, and WellPoint in regions where they participate.”Details
“Just 2 in 5 Los Angeles community health clinics are ready for the impacts of Obamacare, a new study found.
A May brief from the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research examined approximately 40 clinics in the Los Angeles area to determine how prepared they were for an expected increase in new patients because of the Affordable Care Act, the national healthcare law that went into full effect this year.”Details
“The states that tried and failed to run their own Obamacare health insurance marketplaces aren’t quite ready to call it quits.
With the health-care law’s next open enrollment period just more than six months away, Nevada on Tuesday joined the ranks of Maryland, Oregon and Massachusetts as states that have ditched their faulty enrollment Web sites. Of the 14 states — plus the District — that chose to run their own Obamacare exchanges in 2014, these four have either decided to join HealthCare.gov or do enrollment through another system in 2015.”
“The board that oversees Maryland’s troubled health insurance marketplace repeatedly violated a state law that requires such groups to fully explain their reasons for meeting behind closed doors, the Maryland Open Meetings Compliance Board concluded this week.”Details
“Unworkable technology pushed Oregon’s health care exchange to the brink, making it the first state to abandon its self-administered system in favor of the federal exchange. But now prosecutors are following the money.”Details
“On March 25, a three-judge panel of the D.C. Circuit heard oral arguments in Halbig v. Sebelius, one of four lawsuits challenging the legality of implementing certain ACA provisions in the 34 states with federally established health insurance Exchanges. On May 14, a panel of the Fourth Circuit heard arguments in a related case, King v. Sebelius. Rulings in these cases could come at any time.”Details