The Obama administration on Wednesday issued its long-awaited final rule on what states and insurers must do to provide the essential health benefits required in the individual and small-group market beginning in 2014 under the healthcare reform law. The rule included few changes from previous administration proposals, which could help states and insurers as they prepare for new online state health insurance marketplaces, known as healthcare exchanges, scheduled to begin enrolling beneficiaries for federally subsidized coverage on October 1, 2013.
Columnist Donald Lambro says that since Obamacare sets limits on charging older customers higher insurance prices than younger and healthier ones, all of those young, healthy people who voted for Obama will see their insurance premiums climb sharply. Lambro says that Obamacare demands insurers provide young people with more medical coverage than they want or need.
Scott Gottlieb describes how ObamaCare will force tens of millions of Americans to accept health coverage that is inferior to what they have now. The most threatened groups: small business employees, individuals who buy directly from insurers, seniors who qualify for Medicaid and, surprisingly, children enrolled in the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), a bipartisan program expanded over the past two decades by Obama’s fellow liberals.
Conservative health policy thinkers Holtz-Eakin and Avik Roy propose that Republicans embrace a system whose goal is to transition Americans into a system of regulated, subsidized, individual plans modeled on the Switzerland approach. In other words, they want Republicans to surrender. But they do want to reduce the subsidies by loosening regulations that make the insurance plans stingier, but slowly raise the Medicare eligibility age, so that over time an increasing share of the elderly population will be covered by Obamacare rather than Medicare. Finally, they want to transition low-income Americans out of Medicaid and into the Obamacare exchanges. All of this would reduce the amount of tax revenue needed to finance Obamacare.
David Long, President Pro Tempore of the Indiana State Senate, has assigned Senate Bill 230 to the rules committee where it will essentially disappear. Long explains that the bill to invalidate Obamacare is unconstitutional, and wasting legislative time debating it would be counterproductive. By doing so this conservative Fort Wayne Republican is crossing swords with a tea party-backed initiative to invalidate the national health care law.
The huge theme-park resort Universal Orlando plans to stop offering medical insurance to part-time workers after December 31, 2013. The resort says they have been forced by new federal rules that preclude them from offering “mini-med” plans. Such plans currently provide part-time workers with a low-premium, limited insurance plan, but they have a cap on the payout of benefits.
Dunkin’ Brands — the owner of Dunkin’ Donuts — is working to overturn a major provision of Obamacare.
The company, based in Canton, Ohio, is lobbying the White House to change its definition of full-time work from at least 30 hours a week to 40 or more per week, CEO Nigel Travis told the Financial Times.
The change would leave Dunkin’ and other companies with fewer workers to insure under President Barack Obama’s healthcare reform law.
The federal government will have an even bigger role in Obamacare than anticipated because of the 26 health exchanges it must operate for states declining to set up their own, says Dr. Scott Atlas in an exclusive interview on Newsmax TV. A top public policy expert, Atlas is a senior fellow with the Hoover Institution.
Jed Graham claims it is a myth that a family of four will have to pay at least $20,000 a year for healthcare under Obamacare. In 2016, average premiums for a family of four buying a silver-level plan through ObamaCare’s exchange are expected to be $15,400 before subsidies. However, Graham says that he IRS interpretation of “affordable” could lock millions of modest-earning families out of ObamaCare’s subsidies.
The newly released “ObamaCare Survival Guide” has rocketed to the No. 2 spot on The New York Times’ bestseller list for advice-giving paperbacks.
This remarkable ascendance comes just one week after the book first made The New York Times bestseller list.
The first comprehensive and easy-to-read road map on the 2,700-page, the “ObamaCare Survival Guide: The Affordable Care Act and What It Means for You and Your Healthcare,” has already made Amazon #1 bestseller status in multiple categories with more than 150,000 copies sold.