Thursday, August 11, 2011

Obamacare- Healthcare Bill - #3157 - 1 in 8 Employer Insurance Plans Getting the Axe Since Obamacare - Daily Caller (2) Obamacare Limits Children's Access to Care (3) Kansas Returns Health Insurance Exchange Grant - Reuters (4) Obamacare Funded Health Centers Won't Ask Citizenship Status - The Blaze

One in eight small businesses have had or expect to have their health insurance plans terminated since the passage of President Obama’s health care reform. This figure comes from a National Federation of Independent Business report which surveyed small businesses one year after the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The report, released today, found prevailing negative attitudes about the law’s impact among small business owners. Among the most striking of NFIB’s findings was the number of employer health insurance plans that have been or will be eliminated since PPACA’s passage — 12 percent, or one in eight. Eliminating employer health care plans “is the first major consequence of PPACA that small-business owners likely feel,” the report said. Read more..... 

Obamacare Limits Children's Access to Care - Heritage Foundation - Last Wednesday, the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee released a grim report showing a reduction in the availability of child-only policies for parents looking to purchase health insurance for their children. They findings show that, “Of the 50 states, 17 reported that there are currently no carriers selling child-only health plans to new enrollees. Thirty-nine states indicated at least one insurance carrier exited the child-only market following enactment of the new health care laws.”  The reason for this decline in child coverage is that specific provisions of Obamacare regulating the child insurance market have made it more difficult for insurers to continue offering the plans. Obamacare creates what is commonly known as a “guarantee issue” requirement for the child-only market, which means insurers cannot deny coverage based on preexisting conditions.  Although this intent behind this policy is obviously to expand coverage, in reality it makes it financially unsustainable for insurers to continue offering child-only health insurance due to adverse selection. As the report explains:  Read more.......

Kansas Returns Health Insurance Exchange Grant - Reuters - Kansas became on Tuesday the second U.S. state to return a large federal grant meant to help it create a prototype health insurance exchange as part of the Obama administration's healthcare overhaul.  Republican Governor Sam Brownback said the state would give back the $31.5 million it received from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to become an early leader, along with six other states, in establishing health insurance exchanges that other local government could use as a model.  Exchanges are meant to provide an open marketplace of competing insurance plans that allow uninsured people and small businesses to band together to negotiate cheaper rates.  Kansas's move brings the total amount of the returned exchange-related federal grants to almost $90 million as Republican governors seek to block implementation of the healthcare law supported largely by Democratic lawmakers.  Experts warn that many states are falling far behind schedule for a smooth and timely roll-out of the reform.  States are facing a deadline of Jan. 1, 2013, to submit detailed plans for their exchanges or see HHS come in and build one itself. Returning grants increases the likelihood that HHS would have to do the work.  Read more.........

Obamacare Funded Health Centers Won't Ask Citizenship Status - The Blaze - Under Obama’s health care law, the Department of Health and Human Services plans to hand out money to local health centers specifically targeted to serve communities where illegal immigrants are likely to be a considerable percentage of those receiving care.CNS News reports that HHS plans to distribute $28.8 million to 67 health centers, with $8.5 million specifically designated for health centers focused on serving the migrant farm worker community.  As a matter of policy, citizenship status will be neither asked nor given at the centers. Judy Andrews, a spokeswoman for the Health Resources and Services Administration had this to say about the federal healthcare grants:  “The Program’s authorizing statute does not affirmatively address immigration status, rather, it simply states that health centers are required to provide primary health care to all residents of the health center’s service area without regard for ability to pay.  Health centers do not, as a matter of routine practice, ask about or collect data on citizenship or other matters not related to the treatment needs of the patients seeking health services at the center.”  Read more.......

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