Hot Air: Obamacare payment to insurers $2.5 billion less than expected

October 8th, 2015 / Kristina Ribali / 0 comments

Reneging on previous promises and guarantees, the federal government has decided to short insurance companies out of billions of dollars agreed to under Obamacare. The Washington Examiner reports that, “Insurers learned late Thursday that they’ll receive just $362 million out of the $2.9 billion” they had requested from Obamacare in 2014. Why? Because Obamacare “hasn’t […]

Read More Shocking Report Reveals Rampant Welfare Fraud in Arkansas

October 8th, 2015 / Nicholas Horton / 0 comments

The Government Accountability Office routinely warns that states’ welfare programs are at high risk for waste, fraud, and abuse. A new report, released Wednesday by Arkansas’ Medicaid task force, brings these warnings to life.

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Desert News: Does Romneycare offer any lessons for Utah’s Obamacare Medicaid expansion debate?

September 28th, 2015 / FGAStaff / 0 comments

Many consider Massachusetts’ health law from 2006 — aka “Romneycare” — as the inspiration for the Affordable Care Act — aka “Obamacare.” While there are some important differences between the two, Utah legislators would be wise to reflect upon cautionary tales from Massachusetts before considering bringing Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion to the Beehive State.

While I have huge respect for Mitt Romney, having worked for him when he was governor, it must still be noted that in pre-Romneycare Massachusetts, roughly $1 billion a year was spent on uncompensated care, mostly paid for — as now contemplated by Utah policymakers — via a “health care provider tax.”

In Utah, health care providers (hospitals, doctors, pharmaceutical companies and insurance companies) would be taxed to expand Medicaid coverage to able-bodied adults. The well-intentioned thought behind this is that if you get more people covered, you will reduce health care costs. However, as William F. Buckley Jr. once said, “idealism is fine, but as it approaches reality, the costs become prohibitive.” Massachusetts’ history has borne out that truth.

Read the full article originally posted at The Desert News by Josh Archambault.

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Forbes: Utah Proposes Tax On The Sick To Pay For Obamacare Medicaid Expansion

September 28th, 2015 / FGAStaff / 0 comments

After the legislature blocked his Obamacare Medicaid expansion plans in 2014 and 2015, Utah Governor Gary Herbert (R) began working with legislative leaders to negotiate some kind of “compromise” to expand the program to more than 100,000 able-bodied adults. Although the deal is being negotiated in secret, some details have been leaked to the public.

According to the few specifics made public, the biggest component of the negotiated framework is to levy a new “assessment” on medical providers in Utah to help pay for the state’s share of expansion. But the so-called assessment is simply a new Obamacare tax on the sick that will not only raise health care costs for all Utahns, but add significantly to the national debt.

Read More – Kaiser Study: Deductibles under Obamacare rising seven times faster than inflation

September 24th, 2015 / Kristina Ribali / 0 comments

We all remember the promise – President Obama famously told us time and time again that ObamaCare would lower health insurance premiums by $2,500 a year for families. But unless you’re receiving a giant subsidy from the government for your insurance, you’re not paying less in premiums, in fact, for employer sponsored plans, premiums have risen nearly $5,000 since Obama promised to cut them. What about deductibles? They haven’t decreased either. But don’t just take my word for it.

A new survey finds that in 2015 deductibles on employer-provided health plans actually rose by almost nine percent.

According to a new report by the Kaiser Family Foundation and the Health Research & Educational Trust, the increase brings the average deductible that workers must pay for their health insurance plans to $1,077; more than triple what it was a decade ago. As reported in the L.A. Times, “That is seven times faster than wages have risen in the same period.”

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ObamaCare Falls Short of Enrollment Estimates

September 18th, 2015 / Kristina Ribali / 0 comments

When the ObamaCare legislation was being argued in the halls of Congress, several estimates painted it to be the panacea of health coverage. Any and everyone who didn’t have insurance would get it (because, you know, the law forced them to), but now it seems that reality is falling quite short of those promises.

The Census Bureau just released a tally of the uninsured for 2014. As Chris Conover writes in Forbes, “the news is not good for Obamacare.” Census found that the nationwide uninsured rate fell to 11.7 percent in 2014, down from 14.5 percent in 2013. The number of uninsured Americans fell to 36.7 million from 45.2 million in 2013. That means 8.5 million people gained health insurance coverage in 2014.

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No Surprise: Costs to Manage Montana’s Medicaid Expansion Will Be Higher Than Expected

September 16th, 2015 / Kristina Ribali / 0 comments

Back in March 2014, we warned that expanding Medicaid in Montana to able-bodied, working age adults without children would be disastrous, for multiple reasons. Chief among these reasons were the facts that Montana lawmakers had no reliable cost estimates to make an informed decision, and that the state’s Medicaid spending was already growing rapidly. In 2012, Montana’s annual costs for Medicaid were $1.1 billion, double what they were a decade earlier, and they were expected to double again to $2.2 billion by 2022.

Montana’s legislature rejected Medicaid expansion twice, but unfortunately this past April, several Republican legislators colluded with the Democrats to change the legislative rules and push forward a bill authorizing Medicaid expansion. Gov. Steve Bullock (D-MT) signed the bill into law and Montana began seeking bids from private companies to manage their Medicaid expansion enrollments and administration.

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Harvard Study: ObamaCare Hurting Safety-Net Hospitals

September 16th, 2015 / Kristina Ribali / 0 comments

ObamaCare has hurt family budgets, patients seeking care and even hospitals. A study from none other than Harvard Medical School “found that safety-net hospitals that treat many low-income or uninsured individuals are being penalized more for hospital readmission rates than other hospitals.”

These hospitals are the institutions that were supposed to help provide ObamaCare enrollee with the care they need, and be rewarded for providing that access. Instead, as the Washington Examiner puts it, this is “the latest evidence of problems with the law’s effort to improve quality of care.”

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Study: ObamaCare Premiums Set to Rise in 2016

September 14th, 2015 / Kristina Ribali / 6 comments

Remember the promise from President Obama? We were told the average family would see a savings of $2,5000 a year under ObamaCare. A new study by the Kaiser Family Foundation shows premiums continue to rise – some as much 22% or more.

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ObamaCare Costs Rise, But There May be Hope for Change

September 11th, 2015 / Kristina Ribali / 2 comments

The”Affordable Care Act” has never proven to be affordable, despite what we were promised by President Obama. Now, as insurance costs continue to rise, support for ObamaCare is taking yet another hit.

As we head into the enrollment period for next year, “the general consensus today is that the cost of Obamacare will significantly rise for millions of Americans in 2016.” The rise of plan costs will vary from state to state, but plan on those insurance bills taking a bigger hit out of your pocketbook.

All of this is caused by the law’s miscalculated “risk pools.”

The presumption was that young, healthy individuals would enroll in ObamaCare plans, spreading out the risk and balancing the plan’s costs with the older, sicker enrollees. That hasn’t happened. Instead insurers are facing steep losses as their pools of insured are older, sicker, and more expensive than they anticipated.

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