KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Costs And Coverage: Trying To Discern Who Will Experience Health Law Gains Or Feel Its Pinch

The Wall Street Journal reports on how the law might impact small businesses that employ young and healthy workers as well as whether the measure's new coverage might be too expensive for low-paid employees. Also in the news, a report concludes that U.S. consumers who purchase health insurance on the individual market saved $2.1 billion last year due to the overhaul's rules.

The Wall Street Journal: How The New Health Law Could Raise Costs For Young, Healthy Employees
The younger and healthier a small business's workforce, the greater its chances of facing a big spike in health-insurance premiums next year. That is because the Affordable Care Act's impact on small employers will split largely on generational and industry lines, putting entrepreneurs like Eileen Hasson, owner of a technology-services firm with mostly male employees in their 20s and 30s, at a disadvantage (Needleman, 6/6).

The Wall Street Journal: Will New Health Insurance Be Too Expensive For America's Lowest-Paid?
For people like Salvador Martínez, a 50-year-old grounds crewman, the health-care law seems to be a potential game changer. Because of the law, his employer, a landscaping service in Santa Clarita, Calif., will begin offering coverage to him, and to its 230 other low-wage workers, next year. But Chris Angelo, a second-generation owner of the landscaping firm, Stay Green Inc., doesn't expect a groundswell of enrollments next year from lower-wage workers such as Mr. Martínez (Maltby, 6/6).

Los Angeles Times: Health Led To $2.1 Billion In Savings For Consumers, Report Says
A new report estimates that U.S. consumers who purchase their own health insurance saved $2.1 billion last year due to tougher rules in the federal healthcare law. Thursday's report by the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation estimates that individual premiums would have been $1.9 billion higher in 2012 without the requirements in the federal Affordable Care Act. In addition, the nonprofit group said individual policyholders nationwide should receive $241 million in rebates this summer (Terhune, 6/6).

Kaiser Health News: Capsules: Study: Consumers Saved $2.1B On Individual Coverage
People who bought their own health insurance last year saved $2.1 billion because of the federal health law, mainly because of a provision that limits how much of their premium can go to insurers' administration and profits, says a report out today from the Kaiser Family Foundation (6/7).

The Hill: ObamaCare Rule Lowered Premiums, Analysis Finds
ObamaCare's rule that insurance companies spend no less than 80 percent to 85 percent of premiums on medical care has allowed many consumers to pay less for their coverage, according to a new analysis. The Kaiser Family Foundation studied the figure, called the medical loss ratio (MLR), and reported that it led to $1.9 billion in premium savings and $1.1 billion in consumer rebates last year (Viebeck, 6/6).

The law also sometimes leads to new jobs in some locations --

Los Angeles Times: Affordable Care Act Spurs Hiring Blitz
The nation's complicated healthcare overhaul is proving to be a surprising source of work: People are needed to explain the law's provisions to consumers. In addition to the expected demand for more nurses and doctors to treat millions of newly insured patients, the federal Affordable Care Act is feeding a cottage industry in call centers (Lopez, 6/6).

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