A project of the Galen Institute

Issue: "Exchanges"

Latest Official Figures Show The Obamacare Exchange Performance Was Worse Than We Thought

Chris Conover
Forbes
Wed, 2014-11-26
"The Obama administration has admitted to erroneously inflating the count of Exchange enrollees by incorrectly including 380,000 dental subscribers. Instead of 7.1 paid enrollments in the Exchanges as of mid-October, the correct figure should have been only 6.7 million. For the same reason, the reported number of paid enrollments in August should have been only 6.9 million rather than the 7.3 million figure originally reported. It’s a bit disappointing that this goof might never have been discovered but for the investigative efforts of Republican staffers for the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, using data that took weeks of negotiations to secure from the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. That said, it’s encouraging to see DHHS Secretary Burwell take the position “The mistake we made is unacceptable. I will be communicating that clearly throughout the department.”"

ObamaCare architect Gruber set to testify at December House hearing

Fox News
Wed, 2014-11-26
"Jonathan Gruber, the controversial MIT professor and ObamaCare architect caught on video calling the American people stupid multiple times, has agreed to testify before the House Oversight Committee next month on the lack of transparency surrounding the Affordable Care Act. In a letter to Gruber, Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., chairman of the House committee, asked him and Marilyn Tavenner, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Service administrator, to appear and answer questions on repeated transparency failures and outright deceptions involving the Affordable Care Act. The hearing will be held Dec. 9 at 9:30 a.m."

A Quarter Of Uninsured Say They Can’t Afford To Buy Coverage

Mary Agnes Carey, Kaiser Health News
Wed, 2014-11-26
"Just days before the health law’s marketplaces reopened, nearly a quarter of uninsured said they expect to remain without coverage because they did not think it would be affordable, according to a poll released Friday. That was by far the most common reason given by people who expect to stay uninsured next year, according to the latest tracking poll by the Kaiser Family Foundation. (KHN is an editorially independent program of the foundation.) Forty-one percent of individuals without health insurance said they expected they would remain uninsured, while about half said they plan to get coverage in the coming months."

Obamacare: Most-Used Plans Face Double-Digit Average Premium Increases

Guy Benson
Townhall
Wed, 2014-11-26
"Please consider Friday's 'Obamacare losing streak' post officially updated. Behold, the 'Affordable' Care Act at work. Congratulations, "beneficiaries" (via The Hill): The average price of the most popular ObamaCare health insurance plans rose 10 percent for 2015, according to a new study of premium figures published Friday by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)...Not only are premiums increasing, but if consumers do not pick a different plan, they could pay more due to annual changes in how subsidies are calculated."

In Year Two, Obamacare’s Off to Another Bad Start

Bob Moffit and Kenneth Manyari Magro
The Daily Signal
Wed, 2014-11-26
"The implementation of the Affordable Care Act seems like an unending nightmare. Desperate for some good news, the White House is justly relieved and celebrating the fact that the government website is not plagued with last year’s disasters. But other big challenges loom, including the administration of the law’s hideously complex insurance subsidy system, as well as coverage and cost problems."

Sebelius Swears ‘We Were Very Forthright’ About Obamacare

Sarah Hurtubise
Daily Caller
Mon, 2014-11-24
"Former Health and Human Services secretary Kathleen Sebelius, who infamously presided over HealthCare.gov’s flop, swore Monday that her administration was “forthright with the American public” about Obamacare. “We were very forthright with the American public — I think members of Congress who wrote this legislation were very forthright,” Sebelius said on CNN’s “New Day.” “It was both about — having affordable coverage was certainly a piece of it, but also people getting coverage they didn’t have.”"

In Partisan Washington, Health Law Faces Grave Legal Technicalities

John Harwood
NY Times
Mon, 2014-11-24
"In March 1997, two congressmen proposed a welfare law so detailed that it had 77 sections. Within a month it sailed through the House by voice vote. There was nothing unusual about swift passage for the Welfare Reform Technical Corrections Act of 1997. But in retrospect, it underscores the deteriorating conditions in Washington today, as the Supreme Court has accepted a case threatening the Affordable Care Act over the interpretation of a single ambiguous phrase."

The Boehner Lawsuit Against Obama: an Explainer

Jacob Gershman
Wall Street Journal
Mon, 2014-11-24
"House Republicans on Friday filed a lawsuit against the Obama administration alleging that the way in which the White House implemented its health-care law violates the Constitution. The lawsuit, filed in federal court in Washington, D.C. and drafted by George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley, escalates a brewing battle between GOP lawmakers and the Obama administration over separation of powers. Here’s a quick overview of its legal arguments."

CMS reminds insurers that ObamaCare money can't pay for abortions

Elise Viebeck, The Hill
Mon, 2014-11-24
"The Obama administration is seeking to tighten how insurers segregate funds for abortion coverage on the ObamaCare exchanges after a scathing government investigation found the rules have been widely ignored. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) provided additional detail Friday about how health plans should go about charging women for abortion coverage that is handled separately from their other health benefits obtained on the exchanges."

HHS Formally Moves To Close Loophole Allowing Plans Without Hospital Benefits

Jay Hancock, Kaiser Health News
Mon, 2014-11-24
"The Obama administration took another step to close what many see as a health-law loophole that allows large employers to offer medical plans without hospital coverage and bars their workers from subsidies to buy their own insurance. “It has come to our attention that certain group health plan designs that provide no coverage of inpatient hospital services are being promoted,” the Department of Health and Human Services said in proposed rules issued late Friday."

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