As Health Law Debate Shifts From Theoretical To Tangible, Opponents No Longer Have Loudest Voices
Now that the spotlight is off of the president who created the law, the focus is on the care it provides. The shouts for repeal have quieted as those clamoring for answers about their coverage flood the space. Meanwhile, despite his vocal criticism of the Affordable Care Act, Mike Pence, while governor of Indiana, turned to it when his state was in a crisis.
The New York Times:
With Coverage In Peril And Obama Gone, Health Law’s Critics Go Quiet
For seven years, few issues have animated conservative voters as much as the repeal of the Affordable Care Act. But with President Barack Obama out of office, the debate over “Obamacare” is becoming less about “Obama” and more about “care” — greatly complicating the issue for Republican lawmakers. (Martin, 2/19)
How Mike Pence Used Obamacare To Halt Indiana's HIV Outbreak
When then-Gov. Mike Pence faced the worst public health crisis to hit Indiana in decades, he turned to Obamacare — a program he vilified and voted against. In 2015, as a rash of HIV infections spread through rural southern Indiana, state health officials parachuted into Scott County and enrolled scores of people into Obamacare's expanded Medicaid program so they could get medical care and substance abuse treatment. Many were addicted to opioids and had contracted HIV by sharing dirty needles. (Ehley, 2/20)
The Washington Post:
Obamacare Launched A New Wave Of Start-Ups. Now They’re Bracing For What’s Next.
Four years ago, Noah Lang saw an opportunity in Obamacare. With an eye toward the millions of people set to purchase health insurance on their own for the first time, the 29-year-old Silicon Valley entrepreneur founded a start-up, Stride Health, that helps them compare and choose between plans — and do it all from a smartphone. Steadily and without fanfare, the Affordable Care Act has created a boom in Silicon Valley. (Dwoskin, 2/20)
The Wall Street Journal:
The Affordable Care Act: The View From A Hospital CEO
Health care in the U.S. appears to be heading toward dramatic changes for the second time in less than a decade. As president and chief executive of New York-Presbyterian, Steven Corwin will have to maneuver a system with 10 hospitals and $7 billion in annual revenue through what may be years of regulatory uncertainty and upheaval for U.S. hospitals. (Evans, 2/20)
And in news from the states —
Amid Health Care 'Chaos,' Tennesseans Push Lawmakers For Assurances
With Tennessee's healthcare.gov market for 2018 at a breaking point, some are ramping up calls on federal lawmakers to take action to make sure people aren't without health insurance options next year. Since Humana’s decision last week to leave the federally run exchange, the Tri-Cities area is the only region of the state that will have two insurers from which residents can choose in 2018. The Greater Knoxville area will have none. Yet, without progress on repeal-and-replace or repair of the Affordable Care Act in Washington, D.C., the exchange's existence in the state beyond 2017 will depend on business decisions by insurers BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee and Cigna. (Fletcher, 2/20)
UT/TT Poll: Texans Want A Health Care Program That’s Not Called Obamacare
Texans want to dump the previous president’s signature health care program, but only a small minority want to move on without replacing it, according to the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll. If the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare, were to be repealed and replaced, 68 percent of Texans said lawmakers should wait until they have a replacement plan worked out before they repeal the current law. A smaller group — 23 percent — would repeal Obamacare immediately and figure out the details of a replacement plan later. (Ramsey, 2/21)
The Philadelphia Inquirer:
I Have Obamacare Insurance. What Do I Do Now?
If you are already enrolled in a plan through the ACA, there are ways to maximize your coverage before any changes happen. Remember those labs, specialist referrals or imaging that your physician recommended, but maybe you’ve postponed? Now is the time to follow through with them. Also, talk to your physician about switching from brand-name medications to generics when possible to cut down on future co-pays. There are many generics that work as well as brand names, and which certain pharmacies offer through discounted prescription plans. (Chan, 2/19)