Readers of my articles know that no one has been more critical of Obamacare's flaws––particularly over the impact the program has had on middle-class consumers in the individual health insurance market. And, readers already know that no one has been more supportive of the Medicaid expansion from the very beginning. Now, the Trump administration wants to give states the option to abolish the open-ended federal funding of Medicaid ...

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In an earlier post, I pointed out that there is no better chance of passing a Medicare for all health care plan through Congress in the coming years than there was in 1977, or 1993, or 2009. Then Elizabeth Warren showed us just how politically unrealistic single-payer health care is when she released her funding plan and then quickly backtracked to the public option ...

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The Republicans don't yet have a health care plan less than a year before the 2020 elections. But based upon their 2017 Obamacare repeal and replace efforts, as well as a major document recently issued by the House Republican Study Committee, what might a Republican plan look like? First, let's review the plan House Republicans passed in 2017 during their failed repeal and replace efforts. House Republicans would have repealed the Medicaid expansion ...

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As the year winds down and must-pass year-end spending bills are completed -- and with that, any chance of attaching and approving health care legislation -- the special interests have won big, and consumers have lost big. Employers, unions, and insurance companies won big with the repeal of the "Cadillac" tax on high cost-benefit plans at a cost of $200 billion over ten years as well as the repeal of the ...

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Fixing Obamacare and adding a public option is the health care policy territory first staked out by Democratic Presidential candidate Joe Biden. Writing about Biden's plan recently on my blog, I said:

If the Democrats capture the White House, keep the House, and take over the Senate, no matter who they elect as President, this Biden health care outline, not Medicare for all, will likely be the plan Democrats ...

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There are few things in our health care system that are more unfair than surprise medical bills. Consumers think they have good coverage and are getting treatment in their health plan network only to get a huge unexpected bill in the mail because it turned out that something like the anesthesiologist at their recent surgery wasn't covered. How were they to know that? As you're sitting on the gurney about to ...

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If the Democrats capture the White House, keep the House and take over the Senate, no matter who they elect as president, this Biden health care outline, not Medicare for all, will likely be the plan Democrats embrace in 2021. The Biden health care proposal directly takes on the big things that haven't worked in Obamacare. Here are the things that are most broken in Obamacare:

  • The individual health insurance premiums and ...

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The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has estimated that 14 million of people would lose coverage in 2018, 21 million in 2020, and 24 million in 2026 if the House Republican plan is allowed to significantly amend the Affordable Health Care Act (Obamacare). In my last post, I called the House Republican bill "mind-boggling" for the negative impact I believe it would have on the number of those uninsured and ...

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It won't work. Obamacare works for the poorest that have affordable health insurance because all of the program's subsidies tilt in their favor. Obamacare doesn't work well for the working and middle class who get much less support -- particularly those who earn more than 400 percent of the federal poverty level, who constitute 40 percent of the population and don't get any help. Because so many don't do well under the law, ...

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The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, CBS News and other news outlets have led with headlines touting the big news that Donald Trump is willing to keep parts of the Affordable Care Act -- notably the pre-existing condition protections and the ability for children up to the age of 26 to stay on their parents policies. Except this isn’t news. In May, Trump’s policy advisor told Healthline that a ...

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It's been pretty quiet lately on the Obamcare front. So quiet, that there has been a flurry of articles recently over how Obamacare has dropped to a second or even third tier issue and will hardly matter come election-time. Wishful thinking. Obamacare has largely been out of the news cycle for a couple of months but that is about to change. A few thoughts. The 2015 rate increases have been largely modest. Does that prove Obamacare ...

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The 2-1 decision by the DC Court of Appeals striking down federal premium subsidies, in at least the 27 states that opted for the feds to run their Obamacare insurance exchanges, has the potential to strike a devastating blow to the new health law. The law says that individuals can get subsidies to buy health insurance in the states that set up insurance exchanges. That appears to exclude the states that do ...

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The administration issued a report recently that says individuals who selected plans in the federal health insurance exchanges have a post-credit premium that is on average 76% less than the full premium for the plans they selected. And, 69% are paying less than $100 after the subsidies -- 46% are paying $50 or less. The administration also pointed out that 65% of individuals selecting the silver plan in the federal exchange chose ...

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House Energy and Commerce Committee Republicans seemed surprised recently when representatives of the insurance industry reported that they didn't have enough data yet to forecast prices for next year's health insurance exchanges, the market was not about to blow up, and that so far at least 80% of consumers have paid for the health insurance policies they purchased on the exchanges. The executives also reported there are still serious ...

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Health insurance reform was long overdue. But did it need to be done the way the architects of the Affordable Care Act did it? Obamacare was enacted, and the private health insurance market fundamentally changed, so that we could cover millions of people who previously couldn't get coverage. Are enough people getting coverage who didn't have it before to justify the sacrifices the people who were already covered -- in the individual, ...

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The administration has confirmed that the individual policies that were supposed to be cancelled because of Obamacare can now remain in force another two years. For months I have been saying millions of individual health insurance policies will be cancelled by year-end -- most deferred until December because of the carriers' early renewal programs and because of President Obama's request the policies be extended in the states that have allowed it. The ...

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The Republicans have an alternative to Obamacare and they may have given the Democrats a big political gift. The proposal was unveiled by Republican Senators Richard Burr (NC), Tom Coburn (OK), and Orrin Hatch (UT). The Republican plan targets many of the most unpopular parts of the Affordable Care Act such as expensive mandated benefits and the resulting lack of choice, the individual mandate, the employer mandate, and age-rating disruptions. My sense is ...

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I recently asked if Obamacare was unraveling. The Obama administration announced that they are delaying the employer mandate again. In the announcement, they said that large employers, those with at least 100 workers, will only have to cover 70% of their otherwise eligible workforce in 2015 and 95% in 2016 and beyond. The administration also said that employers with 50 to 100 workers will have their mandate to provide affordable health ...

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Is Obamacare unraveling? Rumors have been circulating in the marketplace all week that the administration was thinking of extending the individual health insurance policies that Obamacare was supposed to have cancelled for as much as three more years. Those rumors have now come out into the open with Tom Murphy's AP story that began running recently. That the administration might extend these polices shouldn't come as a shock. My sense has always been that at ...

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Now that consumers can generally make an efficient health insurance purchase at Healthcare.gov and most of the state-run exchanges, we can finally get to the real question. Are the healthy uninsured going to buy it? The big health insurance changes Obamacare made to the individual and small group market were arguably done in order to get everyone, sick and healthy, covered in a more equitable system. To be clear, no one I know ...

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