Posts Tagged ‘Affordable Care Act’

Kathleen Sebelius: Obamacare rollout was flat out wrong

Kathleen Sebelius

by Anugrah Kumar

Newscast WASHINGTON—Outgoing Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen
Sebelius appeared in a television interview for the first time since her resignation, and
described the Obama administration’s calculation that the law’s online sign-up system
would be ready by Oct. 1 as “just flat out wrong.”

“Clearly, the estimate that it was ready to go Oct. 1 was just flat out wrong,”
Sebelius told NBC’s “Meet the Press” Sunday, of the launch of HealthCare.gov.
She announced her resignation last week, following which President Barack Obama
nominated Sylvia Mathews Burwell, director of the Office and Management and
Budget, as her replacement.

“Well, I think there’s no question – and I’ve said this many times – that the launch of
the website was terribly flawed and terribly difficult,” Sebelius said.

“If I had a magic wand and could go back to mid-September and ask different
questions based on what I know now. … I thought I was getting the best information
from the best experts, but clearly that didn’t go well. … Could we have used more
time and testing? You bet.”

She added that Obama’s Dec. 1 deadline for the website’s repair was also a nail-biting
experience. “Having failed once at the front of October, the first of December became
a critical juncture. That was a pretty scary date.”

Sebelius said she made the decision to quit after the 2012 presidential election but
chose instead to stay through the sign-up period. The outgoing secretary added that
the president did not ask her to stay through the end of his term. “I thought it was
fair to either commit till January of 2017 or leave with enough time that he would get
a strong, competent leader.”

She also talked about the most difficult time of her tenure. “Well, I would say that
the eight weeks where the site was not functioning well for the vast majority of
people was a pretty dismal time,” she said. “And I was, frankly, hoping and watching
and measuring the benchmarks. But, having failed once at the front of October, the
first of December became a critical juncture.”

A week before she resigned, sign-ups for insurance coverage ended with 7.1 million
enrollments, more than initially expected. However, the health care website had
stalled for about six hours on the deadline day for the first year of enrollment on
March 31. And it is not known how many have paid their premiums and how many of
the previously uninsured have signed up.

Sebelius defended Obamacare, saying it gives millions of Americans access to health
care. “People have competitive choices and real information for the first time ever in
this insurance market,” she said.

As budget director, Sebelius’ replacement knows about the health care law and also
the president’s concerns about the problems the Affordable Care Act has posed, a
senior U.S. official told Reuters. She would have a direct line to the president in her
new position, the source added.

Obama needs to deal with increasing criticism over the health care law before the
mid-term elections, and he apparently believes a new face of Obamacare will help.
While Republicans are likely to remain at the helm of the House of Representatives,
Obama cannot afford to let the GOP win control also of the Senate.

http://newscastmedia.com/rollout-obamacare.htm

         

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Joseph Earnest - April 14, 2014 at 8:00 pm

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CBO report: Obamacare after effect may cause job loss

Tax return

Newscast Media WASHINGTON—A report released by the non-partisan Congressional
Budget Office reveals the projected impact Obamacare will have on jobs. The report
shows that the Affordable Care Act includes a range of provisions that will take full
effect over the next several years and that will influence the supply of and demand
for labor through various channels.

For example, some provisions will raise effective tax rates on earnings from labor and
thus will reduce the amount of labor that some workers choose to supply. In
particular, the health insurance subsidies that the act provides to some people will be
phased out as their income rises—creating an implicit tax on additional earnings—
whereas for other people, the act imposes higher taxes on labor income directly.
CONTINUE TO FULL ARTICLE>>

         

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Joseph Earnest - February 5, 2014 at 2:14 am

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Insurance policy cancellation fix offered by Barack Obama

Obamacare

Newscast Media WASHINGTON—President Barack Obama has announced a change to his signature health care legislation. The move comes in response to a wave of anger from Americans who have had their insurance policies cancelled.

Obama said on Thursday that Americans would now be able to keep their cancelled health care plans for another year. The president added that he had heard “loud and clear” from people frustrated by the news that their policies would be cancelled despite his repeated promises that the new healthcare legislation would allow Americans to keep their current plans if they wished.

“The bottom line is insurers can extend current plans that would otherwise be cancelled in 2014,” Obama told reporters at the White House. “And the American people – those who got cancellation notices deserve and have received – an apology from me.”

Making matters worse, the website for the president’s “Obamacare” legislation has been hampered by glitches and repeated crashes since it went live at the start of October. There are an estimated 40 million uninsured people in the US, but only 106,000 people were able to sign up for health insurance last month. Obama did not promise all of the errors would be corrected by the November 30 deadline, but did say
there would be “marked and noticeable” improvements.

Obamacare has received particularly intense criticism from Republicans in Congress, who went as far as to force a government shutdown in October in an attempt to undo it. The president said he would not accept the “brazen” attempts by Republicans to undermine the law and vowed not to “walk away” from the legislation.

“The Affordable Care Act is going to work,” Obama said. “We’re just going to continue chipping away at this until the job is done.”

The Republican speaker of the House, John Boehner, questioned on Thursday whether Obama could legally implement the administrative fix, saying the president was “well aware” that his promise that Americans could keep their policies could not be kept.

“The White House does not have much credibility,” Boehner said. “The only way to fully protect the American people is to scrap this law once and for all.”

Obama, when asked whether Americans had lost trust in his administration, said there was “no doubt people are frustrated.”

“This one is deserved, it’s on us,” he said.

Source: Deutsche Welle

http://newscastmedia.com/insurance-cancellations.htm

         

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Joseph Earnest - November 14, 2013 at 9:25 pm

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Barack Obama apoligizes for health insurance cancellations

Barack Obama

by Leonard Blair

Newscast Media WASHINGTON—President Barack Obama cried mea culpa Thursday for
the problematic rollout of Obamacare and the cancellation of insurance policies he had
assured millions of Americans they could keep if they liked when the new healthcare
law takes effect on Jan. 1, 2014.

“Well, first of all, I meant what I said. We worked hard to try to make sure we
implemented it properly. Obviously, we didn’t do a good enough job. I regret that. We
are talking about five percent of the population who are in what’s called the individual
market,” said Obama in the run-up to his apology in an exclusive interview with NBC
News. CONTINUE TO FULL STORY>>

         

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Joseph Earnest - November 9, 2013 at 12:10 am

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Majority of Americans oppose Obamacare that starts in 2014

Affordable Care Act protests

by Jon Campbell

Newscast Media WASHINGTON—Obamacare starts in 2014, however, it has now been revealed that a majority of Americans oppose the Affordable Care Act, which was passed in 2010. With Obamacare private health insurance will become a requirement for all employed U.S. citizens. However, according to a new CNN-ORC Intl poll released this week, 54 percent of Americans do not want Obamacare implemented. The CNN poll was conducted by ORC International, and surveyed 923 adults in the United States by phone on May 17 and 18.

The survey revealed that 35 percent of Americans were opposed to Obamacare because it is too liberal, and a further 16 percent opposed it but this time because they felt it was not liberal enough.

Just 16 percent Republican-leaning respondents said they favored Obamacare, which stands in stark contrast to Democratic-leaning respondents with nearly three-quarters backing government-controlled health care.

Obamacare requires most American citizens to obtain health insurance. It will expand the availability of coverage by expanding Medicaid eligibility and will require that large employers provide coverage to their employees.

Obamacare requires most American citizens to obtain health insurance. It will expand the availability of coverage by expanding Medicaid eligibility and will require that large employers provide coverage to their employees.

CNN polling director Keating Holland explained the results of the recent poll, stating:

“A majority of younger Americans favor the new health care law; support among other age groups falls as low as 31 percent among senior citizens. Only a third of whites support the law, compared to six in 10 nonwhites. Obamacare also wins majority support in urban areas and in the Northeast, the bluest region of the country.”

Holland added that one of the major issues right now is that health insurance companies “don’t know what their costs will be next year. So they’re guessing.

They’re guessing who will enter the exchanges. They’re guessing who will choose to buy their coverage. They’re guessing whether healthy, young people will obey the individual mandate or pay the penalty. They’re guessing what price they’ll need to be competitive against other insurers, given differences in the networks, benefits, etc. But as they’ll admit to you with a bit of anxiety, they really are just guessing.”

http://newscastmedia.com/affordable-healthcare.htm

         

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Joseph Earnest - May 30, 2013 at 10:12 pm

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Obama offers compromise to religious entities on birth control

Obama offers exemption to religious organizations

Newscast Media WASHINGTON, D.C.—After facing opposition from religious institutions concerning the requirement for such organizations to provide contraception coverage to their employees, Barack Obama is offering a revised version of the health care provision, that would exempt faith-based organizations from paying for such services, but employees could get it under separate coverage paid for directly by insurance companies.

“Today, the Obama Administration moved forward to continue to implement provisions in the health care law that would provide women contraceptive coverage without cost sharing, while taking into account religious objections to contraceptive services by certain religious organizations. The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) released today reflects the public feedback from comments on the Advance NPRM issued in March 2012,” the Department of Health and Human Services said in a statement on its Web site.

Previously, the exemption had a very limited scope in the way it defined religious employers or organizations as we published in this Jan 31. article.

Today, according to revised definition, religious employers include: “Churches, their integrated auxiliaries, and conventions or associations of churches and the exclusively religious activities of any religious order.”

The provision in Obamacare that has been causing a stir, requires most employers to provide coverage for contraceptives, including the morning-after pill, to employees who wish to consume such products.

Religious leaders have said they are still studying the new revised clause, while other small business owners say the provision should not be extended to just “non-profits” but also to “for-profit” small business owners whose religious faith is in conflict with the Affordable Care Act contraceptive provision.

http://newscastmedia.com/contaceptive-mandate.htm

         

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Joseph Earnest - February 2, 2013 at 3:07 am

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