The Alan Katz Health Care Reform Magazine

By Alan Katz | The policies and politics surrounding health care reform in a Donald Trump world.

Deadline Is Friday For Most ACA Insurance Sign-Ups, With Important Exceptions

Open enrollment on the federal health law's marketplace — HealthCare.gov — ends Friday, and most people who want a plan for next year need to meet the deadline.<p>But some consumers who miss the cutoff could be surprised to learn they have the opportunity to enroll later.<p>"While a lot of people will be …

Health Care

Sen. Collins’ Strategy To Stabilize Insurance Market Raises Doubts Among Analysts

Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), whose vote was pivotal in pushing the GOP tax bill forward last week, thought she had a deal to bolster health care …

5 Ways Congressional Tax Legislation Would Transform Health Care

Having failed to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, Congress is now working on a tax overhaul. But it turns out the tax bills in the House and Senate also aim to reshape health care.<p>Here are five ways the tax legislation could change health policy:<p><b>1. Repeal the requirement for most people</b> …

Health Care

Two senators’ inexplicable flip-flop on health care

Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) stood tall against partisan pressure in voting to stop a disastrous health-care bill. Now, in the context of the tax bill, they are prepared to vote for a bill that would repeal the individual mandate, causing grave economic disruption to …

Health Care

Trump Backs Bipartisan ACA Market Bill, Boosting Tax Plan

The fight for the individual health market continues<p>Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn. (Photo: Alexander)<p>President Donald Trump told Republican senators …

Donald Trump

Cost of pneumococcal vaccine keeps rising

Every November, like clockwork, she gets the same letter, said Lindsay Irvin, a pediatrician in San Antonio.<p>It’s from the drug company Pfizer Inc., and it informs her that the price tag for the pneumococcal vaccine Prevnar 13 is going up. Again.<p>And it makes her angry.<p>“They’re the only ones who make …

Health Care

Facebook will show users what Russian propaganda they liked or followed

You could soon see whether you interacted with Russian propaganda on Facebook and Instagram during the 2016 election.<p>On Wednesday, Facebook announced a new portal that lets users see which Internet Research Agency-linked Facebook pages or Instagram accounts they liked or followed between January …

Internet Research Agency

Kaiser Health Tracking Poll – November 2017: The Politics of Health Insurance Coverage, ACA Open Enrollment

KEY FINDINGS:<p>This month marks the start of the ACA’s fifth open enrollment period for individuals who purchase health plans on their own. The …

Health Care

We've lost one of the clearest voices on health care, Uwe Reinhardt

All journalists have a list of experts they can call to explain complicated theories and policies, but few if any could explain things as clearly and …

Health Care

Middle-Class Families Confront Soaring Health Insurance Costs

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. — Consumers here at first did not believe the health insurance premiums they saw when they went shopping for coverage this month on HealthCare.gov. Only five plans were available, and for a family of four with parents in their mid-30s, the cheapest plan went typically for more …

Health Insurance

For Millions of Insured Americans, State Health Laws Don’t Apply

Let’s say you have health insurance through your employer and live in one of 21 states with laws protecting consumers against surprise medical bills …

Health Care

I.R.S. Starts to Enforce Health Law’s Rule That Employers Offer Insurance

As Republicans and the Trump administration continue trying to chip away at the Affordable Care Act, the Internal Revenue Service has begun, for the first time, to enforce one of the law’s most polarizing provisions: the employer mandate.<p>Thousands of businesses — many of them small or midsize — …

Insurance

What repealing Obamacare's individual mandate means

Republican lawmakers have long wanted to kill Obamacare's individual mandate, one of the least popular provisions of the health reform law. Now, GOP senators are trying to do the deed by repealing the mandate in their tax reform bill.<p>Senators say eliminating the individual mandate would give them …

ObamaCare

Senate tax plan repeals Obamacare's individual mandate

<b>OBAMACARE REPEAL IS BACK —</b> Republican efforts to repeal Obamacare have reemerged in the Senate's latest tax reform package, which includes scrapping the health law’s individual mandate.<p>Senate Finance Committee Republicans late Tuesday evening released an updated version of their tax reform plan, …

ObamaCare

The Ezra Klein Show: VC Bill Gurley on Transforming Health Care

November 15, 2017:<p>In November of 2015, I posted a tweet that declared Benchmark was interested in discovering Internet healthcare investments. Our …

Not on Obamacare? 3 Shocking Charts Show Why a Repeal Could Soon Affect You, Too

The first is the most important for you, and the third is what politicians can't afford to ignore.<p>A report came out recently with major implications …

Is 10 minutes long enough for a doctor's appointment? Fed up patients are sick of waiting

Patients are turning up at their GPs with a “shopping list” of ailments after waiting weeks for an appointment, a North East doctor has …

CBO revises deficit estimate from Obamacare individual mandate repeal

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Congressional Budget Office on Wednesday said that repealing the individual mandate for health insurance would reduce the federal budget deficit less than first forecast as it readied a revised analysis of a policy shift favored by Republicans.<p>The CBO, the nonpartisan …

4 reasons why US health care is so expensive

<b>(CNN) —</b> Health care spending in the United States increased by about $933.5 billion between 1996 and 2013, according to an analysis published Tuesday in the medical journal JAMA. More than half of this surge was a result of generally higher prices for health care services.<p>Joseph L. Dieleman, lead …

Health Care

ObamaCare signups surge in early days to set new record

A record number of people signed up for ObamaCare in the first few days of open enrollment this year compared to the same period in previous years, …

Health Care

Work requirements coming to Medicaid?

<b>WORK REQUIREMENTS COMING TO MEDICAID? —</b> CMS is developing guidance on how states could use waivers for work requirements in Medicaid, a proposal that would represent a major philosophical shift for the 52-year-old entitlement, POLITICO's Rachana Pradhan reports.<p>The guidance is expected to be …

Health Care

Ryan says Obamacare mandate repeal on table in tax debate: Fox News Sunday

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. House speaker Paul Ryan said his colleagues might use the tax overhaul currently under consideration to repeal the Affordable Care Act provision that mandates individuals buy health insurance.<p>"We have an active conversation with our members and a whole host of ideas on …

Insurers make billions off Medicaid in California during Obamacare expansion

Medicaid is rarely associated with getting rich. The patients are poor, the budgets tight and payments to doctors often paltry.<p>But some insurance companies are reaping spectacular profits off the taxpayer-funded program in California, even when the state finds that patient care is subpar.<p>Health …

Health Care

Canadian Patients And Doctors Are Sharing 'Excruciating' Wait Times On Twitter

"Insane."<p>"An eternity."<p>"Excruciating."<p>These are just some of the descriptors patients and doctors across Canada are using as they reveal the wait …

Health Care

House to Vote on Child Health Care, but Funding Will Remain in Limbo

WASHINGTON — The House on Friday is expected to pass legislation to refinance the Children’s Health Insurance Program and send federal funds to community health centers. But a partisan morass over how to pay for the legislation all but ensures that state governments and millions of children will …

Health Care

Five things to know as ObamaCare enrollment begins

The frenzy over health care this year has stoked public confusion about ObamaCare, with some people erroneously stating in polls that the law has …

Insurance

ObamaCare open enrollment begins: What you need to know

The open enrollment period for consumers to buy health care policies on the federal exchanges for the coming year begins Wednesday, though with policy shifts out of D.C. there are changes ahead for companies and individuals.<p>Despite multiple unsuccessful efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable …

Medicare

'Obamacare' curveball: free insurance in 1,500-plus counties

WASHINGTON (AP) — In an odd twist, low-income people in about half of U.S. counties will now be able to get a taxpayer-subsidized "Obamacare" policy for free, according to a new study that suggests some actions by President Donald Trump against the health law could backfire.<p>Monday's analysis of …