A project of the Galen Institute
Julie Bird, FierceHealthcare
Tue, 2013-03-05

"Wellness programs do not appear to lower overall healthcare costs, a new study shows, leading researchers to conclude the Affordable Care Act's wellness program incentives won't significantly reduce healthcare spending. The study, published Monday in the journal Health Affairs, looked at a wellness program launched in 2005 by the St. Louis-based BJC Healthcare hospital system, which required employees wanting access to the system's most generous health plan to participate in the program."

Lloyd Dunkelberger, Herald-Tribune
Mon, 2013-03-04

"House Speaker Will Weatherford, R-Wesley Chapel, said today he agrees with the decision by his chamber's select committee on the Affordable Care Act that voted 10-5 _ along party lines _ to reject the expansion of Medicaid in the state under the federal health care law. Here is Weatherford's statement:"

Elise Viebeck, The Hill
Wed, 2013-02-27

"Democratic support for President Obama's healthcare law has dropped 15 points since November, contributing to a rise in negative attitudes toward the reform, according to a new poll."

Elise Viebeck, The Hill
Wed, 2013-02-27

"A GOP subcommittee chairman railed against the medical-loss ratio (MLR) in President Obama's healthcare law Wednesday for increasing fraud in the private sector. In committee, Rep. Joe Pitts (Pa.) said that most anti-fraud efforts are categorized as 'administrative' expenses and thus limited to 20 percent of a plan's spending under the MLR."

Sam Baker, The Hill
Wed, 2013-02-27

"House Republican doctors released a 'healthcare state of the union' video Wednesday that criticizes President Obama's signature healthcare law but does not mention repealing it. The video shows floor speeches from frequent critics of the healthcare law, including Reps. Phil Roe (R-Tenn.) and Phil Gingrey (R-Ga.). It shows lawmakers arguing that the Affordable Care Act will raise costs and criticizing its taxes on medical devices."

Elise Viebeck, The Hill
Tue, 2013-02-26

"Under a different set of assumptions, the law has the opposite effect over time, the GAO said — the deficit will increase by 0.7 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) if the law's cost-containment measures are phased out. The report attributed this potential increase in part to the law's most expensive features — the Medicaid expansion and the provision of insurance subsidies."

Jen Wieczner, MarketWatch
Fri, 2013-02-22

"By denying coverage to spouses, employers not only save the annual premiums, but also the new fees that went into effect as part of the Affordable Care Act. This year, companies have to pay $1 or $2 “per life” covered on their plans, a sum that jumps to $65 in 2014. And health law guidelines proposed recently mandate coverage of employees’ dependent children (up to age 26), but husbands and wives are optional."

Sam Baker, The Hill
Thu, 2013-02-21

"Cuts to Medicare Advantage will disproportionately hurt poor seniors and minorities, the health insurance industry said Thursday. America's Health Insurance Plans (AHIP) has pushed back hard against a proposed cut to private Medicare Advantage plans. The Obama administration proposed the 2 percent cut late last week."

Jason Garcia, Orlando Sentinel
Tue, 2013-02-19

"Universal Orlando plans to stop offering medical insurance to part-time employees beginning next year, a move the resort says has been forced by the federal government's health-care overhaul. The giant theme-park resort, which generates more than $1 billion in annual revenue, began informing employees this month that it will offer health-insurance to part-timers 'only until December 31, 2013.'"

Noam Levey, The Los Angeles Times
Mon, 2013-02-18

"Less than a year before Americans will be required to have insurance under President Obama's healthcare law, many of its backers are growing increasingly anxious that premiums could jump, driven up by the legislation itself."

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