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House GOP talk about health care alternative amid deep divisions over viable option

Posted on March 4, 2014 at 3:57 pm

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Republican leaders took a small step on Friday toward pulling together a viable alternative to President Barack Obama’s four-year-old health care law but faced deep divisions over whether the GOP caucus can coalesce around a comprehensive proposal. Majority Leader Eric Cantor of Virginia met privately with Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Washington state, the chairman of the Republican Conference and three Republican committee chairmen — Budget’s

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  • Governors: ‘Obamacare’ here to stay

    Posted on March 4, 2014 at 3:54 pm

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The explosive politics of health care have divided the nation, but America’s governors, Republicans and Democrats alike, suggest that President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul is here to stay. While governors from Connecticut to Louisiana sparred Sunday over how best to improve the nation’s economy, governors of both parties shared a far more pragmatic outlook on the controversial program known as “Obamacare” as millions of their constituents

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  • GOP seizes on state woes to highlight health care

    Posted on March 4, 2014 at 3:53 pm

    WASHINGTON (AP) — House Republicans intent on highlighting the woes of President Barack Obama’s health care law need to look no further than their own back yards, some of which are traditionally liberal strongholds. Maryland’s online health care exchange has been plagued by computer glitches since its rollout last year, reflected in abysmal enrollment numbers well below projections through January. The state’s lone Republican in Congress, Rep. Andy Harris, has

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  • Co-ops report early enrollment successes and expansion plans

    Posted on February 27, 2014 at 3:56 pm

    The Affordable Care Act’s nonprofit co-op health plans, which see themselves as the rebel alliance battling established insurers, have signed close to 300,000 members and are set to expand into three new states next year, officials say. Starting from zero in October, New York’s Health Republic Insurance has enrolled more than 50,000 policyholders, said John Morrison, who just stepped down as founding president of the National Alliance of State Health

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  • Governors erupt in partisan dispute at White House

    Posted on February 25, 2014 at 3:54 pm

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The nation’s governors emerged from a meeting with President Barack Obama on Monday claiming harmony, only to immediately break into an on-camera partisan feud in front of the West Wing. Louisiana Republican Gov. Bobby Jindal lashed out first, saying if Obama were serious about growing the economy he would approve the Keystone XL pipeline project and take other executive actions. Instead, Jindal said, Obama “seems to be

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  • Employers scrutinize latest health care concession

    Posted on February 14, 2014 at 3:19 pm

    WASHINGTON (AP) — It may take weeks to render a verdict on the Obama administration’s latest health care concession to employers. But that could make a difference for Democrats battling to keep control of the Senate in the fall congressional elections. All-important details are buried in more than 200 pages of dense Treasury regulations released Monday. The biggest change is that medium-sized firms got another delay in a heavily criticized

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  • Obamacare thrives in San Francisco’s Chinatown

    Posted on February 14, 2014 at 3:18 pm

    SAN FRANCISCO– Chinatown here is a city within a city. Built by immigrants in the latter half of the 19th century, Chinatown was a refuge from the era’s vicious prejudice. But the crowded blocks of Chinatown were also somewhat of a prison. Chinese residents feared leaving the area after dark, and they were barred from local schools and the city’s hospitals — even during an outbreak of bubonic plague in

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  • The health law’s ’3 Rs’ for insurers: A bailout or necessary safeguards?

    Posted on February 5, 2014 at 1:13 pm

    Three provisions in the health law that proponents say are designed to help insurers manage the financial risk of taking all comers while keeping premiums affordable are under fire on Capitol Hill, with Republicans labeling them as giveaways to the health insurance industry. House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis., has said that Republicans may push to repeal the provisions as part of the upcoming negotiations over raising the debt

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  • Poll finds drop in uninsured rate

    Posted on February 5, 2014 at 1:11 pm

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The nation’s uninsured rate dropped modestly this month as the major coverage expansion under President Barack Obama’s health care law got underway, according to a closely watched survey released Thursday. The Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index found that the uninsured rate for U.S. adults dropped by 1.2 percentage points in January, to 16.1 percent. The biggest change was for unemployed people, a drop of 6.7 percentage points. That was

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  • Taxpayer advocate: Avoid health-care tax surprises

    Posted on January 28, 2014 at 10:23 am

    WASHINGTON (AP) — It’s not too early to start thinking about the tax implications of health care reform. Did you buy health insurance through one of the exchanges? You might be eligible for a refundable tax credit. Taxpayers had the option of estimating their 2014 income to see if they qualified for the credit and then having it applied in advance to the cost of the premiums. “We have an

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  • Health care website passed recent security test

    Posted on January 28, 2014 at 10:21 am

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Medicare’s top cybersecurity official says the Obama administration’s health care website recently passed full security tests, easing her earlier concerns about vulnerabilities. Teresa Fryer, chief information security officer at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, told Congress at a hearing Thursday that she would now recommend full operational and security certification for the website known as HealthCare.gov. The Medicare agency is responsible for expanding coverage to

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  • Six things that may move public perception Of Obamacare

    Posted on January 28, 2014 at 10:19 am

    (AP) Nearly four years after President Barack Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into law promising the biggest expansion of health care coverage in half a century, the public remains deeply split over it. Now, though, most of its major provisions are in effect, and arguments may hinge less on ideology and more on how the law is actually working for millions of people – for instance, how many get

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  • House passes bill targeting health care law

    Posted on January 14, 2014 at 1:49 pm

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The House overwhelmingly passed a bill to impose new security requirements on President Barack Obama’s health care law as Republicans maintained an election-year focus on the contentious program and its troubled rollout. The vote Friday was 291-122 for the measure that Republicans said would address potential data breaches, though they offered no examples in which personal data had been compromised through the government website. There were 67

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  • Six things that may move public perception Of Obamacare

    Posted on January 14, 2014 at 1:46 pm

    (AP) Nearly four years after President Barack Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into law promising the biggest expansion of health care coverage in half a century, the public remains deeply split over it. Now, though, most of its major provisions are in effect, and arguments may hinge less on ideology and more on how the law is actually working for millions of people – for instance, how many get

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  • Health website to remain a work in progress

    Posted on November 22, 2013 at 3:59 pm

    KELLI KENNEDY, Associated Press MIAMI (AP) — The HealthCare.gov website will still be a work in progress beyond the end of the month, Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said Tuesday, appearing to soften a promise that the site will be working by then for the vast majority of users. “The 30th of November is not a magic go, no go date. It is a work of constant improvement. We have

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  • Policy cancellations: Obama will allow old plans

    Posted on November 14, 2013 at 2:45 pm

    DAVID ESPO, Associated Press JULIE PACE, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — Bowing to pressure, President Barack Obama on Thursday announced changes to his health care law to give insurance companies the option to keep offering consumers plans that would otherwise be canceled. The administrative changes are good for just one year, though senior administration officials said they could be extended if problems with the law persist. Obama announced the changes

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  • Obama: We `Fumbled the Ball’ on Healthcare.gov

    Posted on November 14, 2013 at 2:43 pm

    Nov. 14 (Bloomberg) — President Barack Obama says he’s giving Americans who’ve received cancellation notices from their insurers a one-year reprieve before they have to get new policies under his health-care law. Obama speaks at a press conference in Washington, DC. (Source: Bloomberg) Click here to see the video Source: Bloomberg

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  • Critics: Some unions could get break from fees

    Posted on November 8, 2013 at 2:09 pm

    SAM HANANEL, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) – Critics of the new health care law are claiming some labor unions could get a break from fees imposed on everyone covered by health insurance. The Obama administration’s plan to exempt “certain self-insured, self-administered plans” from paying fees in 2015 and 2016 is not sitting well with Republicans, who say the move smacks of favoritism for a powerful White House ally. Labor officials

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  • Sebelius takes GOP criticism over “Obamacare”

    Posted on November 8, 2013 at 2:05 pm

    DAVID ESPO, AP Special Correspondent WASHINGTON (AP) – Republicans blistered Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius on Wednesday over the nation’s controversial health care law, bluntly challenging her honesty, pushing for her resignation and demanding unsuccessfully she concede that President Barack Obama deliberately misled the public about his signature domestic program. “We’re not in it to just give you a rough time. We’re in it to try and hopefully

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  • White House sidesteps on “Obamacare” change

    Posted on November 8, 2013 at 1:45 pm

    DAVID ESPO, AP Special Correspondent WASHINGTON (AP) — Under growing pressure, the administration refused repeatedly to state a position Tuesday on legislation formalizing President Barack Obama’s oft-stated promise that people who like their existing coverage should be allowed to keep it under the new health care law. Senate Democrats spoke dismissively of the proposals, signaling they have no intention of permitting a vote on the issue that marks the latest

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  • A state-by-state breakdown of primary care doctors

    Posted on October 10, 2013 at 3:45 pm

    The Associated Press A look at the number of active primary care physicians by state, the rate per capita and each state’s ranking nationally, according to a 2011 report by the Association of American Medical Colleges. The doctors represent those who self-reported dealing directly with patients, as opposed to primary care physicians who are teaching, involved in research or doing mostly administrative work. Updated information is expected to be available

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