Wednesday, 22 January, 2020

Nancy Pelosi Urges Democrats to Fight for Obamacare

Nancy Pelosi Urges Democrats to Fight for Obamacare. News Update for Dec. 22, 2016 about Nancy Pelosi Urges Democrats to Fight for Obamacare. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) wrote a letter to Democrats saying, “In January, we’ll face a new Congress and a new Administration. House Democrats stand ready to fight vigorously for US’s hard-working families.” Pelosi called on Democrats to “plan press events to ‘highlight the risks’ of repealing the ACA and ending the Medicare guarantee.  However, This article from The Hill talks more about how Pelosi planning to fight to protect the Obamacare.

Democratic Governors Warn Republicans About Obamacare Repeal

Members of the Democratic Governors Association wrote a letter to top Republican leaders in which they said. “estimated that states could face nearly $69 billion in costs for uncompensated care over the next 10 years if the health law is repealed.” Democrats who signed the letter called the Republicans’ repeal and delayed replacement plan “nothing more than a Washington, D.C. bait-and-switch.”

GOP Congressman Says Americans Need to Manage Their Own Healthcare Costs After Repeal

  • Congressman Bill Huizenga (R-MI) told reporters that changes in the way healthcare is delivered will be a sure thing after Obamacare is repeale. Americans will need to become more responsible for their treatment costs. In his interview, Huizenga gave an example of when his son injured his arm. And he took his son to the doctor the next day because an immediate emergency room visit would’ve more costly. As reported in this Huffington Post article, “The Michigan congressman’s comments are in line with a long-held, free-market view of the health care system.”
  • Huizenga reported that delaying treatment for his son’s broken arm is “an example of the kind of choices. US citizen would face if Republicans’ repeal of the health care law shifts more out-of-pocket costs to consumers”. (Although, he later said in another interview. “that using the experience of own son’s broken arm was a very bad example to cite.” When asked about health savings accounts. He said there, We’re like as users and consumers of this need to get better acquainted with what’re the true costs. HSAs can do that.”

News Update for Dec. 21, 2016

Obamacare Recipients File Motion to Protect Cost-Sharing Payments

In regard to the lawsuit Republicans filed against the Obama administration for using federal dollars to pay for cost-sharing subsidies. A group of Obamacare recipients filed a motion to enter the case with the hope of protecting cost-sharing payments from being defended. “However the consumers argue that should be allow to become parties to the case. Because once President-elect Donald Trump enters office, the interests of Obamacare defenders will no longer be represent.” They also warned that their health coverage would be in jeopardy. Because insurance companies would pull out of the market if these payments cancelled.

White House Encourages Researchers to Protect Obamacare Data from Trump

Independent researchers who began taking measures to “download key health care data and documents before Jan. 20” say they were further motivated to so by top White House health reform official Jeanne Lambrew who also sounded alarms [that] the new administration might expunge reams of information from some public websites and end access to data. The Researchers aim should to quickly collect data released by new offices that created under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) “to regulate health insurance and test reforms.” They argue that collecting ACA data is essential because it may be needed to support the Democratic Party’s case for keeping major parts of the ACA intact.

Democrats Urge Trump to Work With Them on Drug Price Reform

  • A group of 19 Democratic senators wrote a letter on December 20 in which they urged Trump to cooperate with them on the issue of rising prescription drug costs. The letter noted 5 areas that Trump should help with. Allowing the Medicare program to negotiate prescription prices. Increasing transparency, passing reform on incentives for innovation and topping abusive pricing. And supporting generic competition for branded drugs.”
  • Democrats want Trump to work with them on legislation that would “lift the ban on the HHS secretary negotiating drug prices for Medicare Part D beneficiaries. Also combat overnight price hikes or regular, unjustified price increases.”

News Update for Dec. 20, 2016

Trump’s Pick for Budget Director Could Shape ACA Repeal

President-elect Donald Trump has named conservative Republican, Mick Mulvaney (R-S.C.), as his pick for Director of the Office of Management and Budget. Mulvaney is a strong opponent of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and Planned Parenthood, and he was among leaders. Who held a “standoff over the ACA. That led to the US government shutdown back in 2013. The Trump administration’s repeal of the ACA could be shaped by Mulvaney’s views. Which include having less involvement from the federal government in healthcare, a premium-support system for Medicare, and Medicaid block grants for states. You can get more info on Mulvaney’s views here.

Connecticut Hospitals and Clinics Fear Medicaid Cuts Under Trump

The Republicans’ proposed scaling back of Medicaid expansion is a major concern for Connecticut’s hospitals and clinics. The Chief Medical Officer of the Hartford Healthcare system, Dr. Rocco Orlando, stated that cuts to Medicaid would result in revenue loss of “tens of millions of dollars” and would lead to “staff reductions and scaling back of services.” Orlando also stated that “Connecticut hospitals’ fiscal stability. And sustainability, as well as patient access to healthcare will be compromised. If the ACA is repealed and Medicaid cuts remain in effect. For clinics, the Republicans’ block grant proposal would reduce or freeze. However,Federal Medicaid spending for the Connecticut’s clinics. That serve low-income residents.

Counties That Support Trump May Be Impacted the Most by a Repeal

A study conducted by Gallup revealed that of the 8 county types that experienced an increase in health insurance coverage above the national average, “six of those types. The representing about 77 million people or 33 million votes, a quarter of the total cast—sided with Mr. Donald Trump, some by very large margins.  Some of the county types where Trump voters reside are in large parts of Florida state. Also in Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin state too. And those counties are considered “rural Graying America, Rural Middle America and Working Class Country counties.” These areas were among regions that the ACA targeted to expand coverage, and thus would be greatly impacted by a repeal. This Wall Street Journal article talks more about this subject.

News Update for Dec. 19, 2016

How a Repeal Could Affect Job-Based Coverage

The ACA removed the coverage limit on how much an insurance plan will pay for medical services over a person’s lifetime. Which has been instrumental for people diagnosed with serious medical conditions. But a repeal could bring this back, which would affect both individual and employer-sponsored health insurance. Some experts don’t think a ban on coverage limits will remain if the ACA is repealed and that this issue may be left up to the states to decide. Experts also predict that the mandate. which requires companies with 50 or more full-time equivalent employees to offer health coverage, may be repealed. Because it’s led to such problems as “companies limiting their full-time hiring.” However, it’s expected that “many firms will ‘continue offering coverage to their employees because employees insist on it,’” said University of Michigan law professor Nicholas Bagley.

New Rules for Obamacare Marketplaces

On December 16, the Obama administration issued a new regulation for the 2018 insurance marketplace. The regulation “seeks to address some insurer complaints with how the marketplaces operate.” Some of these complaints have led to insurers leaving the marketplaces. The regulation has also implemented a new formula that changes the way payments to insurers are calculated. This was done to help protect insurers from the financial loss of insuring high-cost enrollees. But “insurers have complained that it doesn’t work effectively.” Given that the GOP plans to delay an Obamacare replacement, it’s expected that the marketplaces will “remain in operation in some form for a couple of years.”

Obamacare Enrollment Hits Record High

In the wake of the Trump-GOP plan to repeal the healthcare law. More than 670,000 Americans signed up for Obamacare on December 15 the “busiest single enrollment day since the healthcare law’s coverage expansion began three years ago in USA. This enrollment came from the 48 states that participate in the marketplaces and includes new and returning Obamacare sign-ups—many of which are low-income Americans who receive premium subsidies.

A Repeal Could Push Residents Back to Free Clinics in Iowa

In Iowa, an increasing number of low-income and homeless patients are receiving care from the Eastern Iowa Health Center (EIHC) instead of the area’s free clinic. Joe Lock, CEO of the EIHC, argues that those patients could be push back to the free clinic or to hospital emergency rooms.  If they become uninsured due to Obamacare repeal. Darlene Schmidt, who’s the chief executive of the free clinic, said, “We’ll have to come up with resources. Right now we don’t have the dollars or the volunteers to provide [that level] of care.” If a repeal happens, about 230,000 Iowa residents who have coverage through Obamacare and Medicaid would be affected.

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