Health Law’s Effects Becoming Clearer Regarding Hospitals, Navigators, Insurers
News outlets covered various aspects of implementation, including a fact check on Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn.
The Washington Post’s Wonkblong: Hospitals See Blue-Red Divide Early Into Obamacare’s Coverage Expansion
A few months into Obamacare's coverage expansion, there's been plenty of debate about where the millions of newly insured have obtained coverage — whether through the law's exchanges, directly from an insurer, through expanded Medicaid or through an employer. The health-care law's immediate impact is a little more clear in hospitals, which are starting to report who's coming through their doors during the first months of expanded coverage under the Affordable Care Act (Millman, 5/12).
CQ Healthbeat: Exchange Rule: Officials Try to Clarify Role of Health Law Navigators
Federal officials are confronting a lobbying war as they finalize rules clarifying the role of so-called navigators that help consumers sign up for coverage in insurance exchanges — a group that plays a vital role in the success of the health care law. The duties of the navigators became the object of a deeply divisive political debate last year. Republicans said the helpers wielded too much power in the sign-up process and were not sufficiently trained or vetted. More than a third of the states created policies limiting what the individuals can do or imposing requirements that make it harder for them to operate (Adams, 5/12).
CQ Healthbeat: Insurers May Have to Cover Free Counseling for Obese Patients
Insurance companies will likely have to cover behavioral counseling free of charge to help overweight and obese patients at risk for cardiovascular problems adopt healthier lifestyles and diets. The United States Preventive Services Task Force on Monday issued a draft recommendation to give its second-best grade of “B” to intensive behavioral counseling without copays for that patient cohort. The 2010 health law calls on insurers to offer treatments that get an “A” or “B” rating from the task force. Insurance companies have about a year to adjust their policies to add services (Young, 5/12).
The Washington Post’s The Fact Checker: Michele Bachmann’s Claim That Obamacare Is ‘Hurting The Bottom Line Of U.S. Businesses
Rep. Bachmann made the comments above while appearing on one of the Sunday morning shows. ... Bachmann’s remarks are missing important context. She’s right that the law still has high disapproval ratings, ... As for the impact on corporate bottom lines, a handful of quarterly earnings reports certainly does not suggest much of a trend. ... One Pinocchio (Kessler, 5/13).