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NATIONAL
December 1, 2013 | By Noam N. Levey and Kathleen Hennessey
WASHINGTON - Two months after its disastrous debut, the federal website for enrolling Americans in health insurance under President Obama's healthcare law has improved markedly, and many consumers are now likely to be able to use it to select insurance plans. Enrollment in health plans - the most important measure - has been accelerating. But the performance of the troubled HealthCare.gov website, which consumers in 36 states are supposed to be able to use to sign up for health coverage, still falls well short of basic standards for Internet-based commerce.
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NATIONAL
December 1, 2013 | By Noam N. Levey and Lisa Mascaro
WASHINGTON - The Obama administration said Sunday it had met its deadline to fix the major problems that have hobbled the federal healthcare website since its disastrous debut two months ago, but officials acknowledged that further repairs were necessary. Reporting on its attempts to improve the HealthCare.gov portal, officials said that Web pages on the site now loaded in less than one second, down from eight seconds in late October. The system now operates more than 90% of the time, up from 40% during some weeks in October.
NEWS
December 1, 2013 | By Noam N. Levey
WASHINGTON - The Obama administration outlined Sunday how far the troubled HealthCare.gov website has progressed since its disastrous debut two months ago, while acknowledging the site must be improved further. Web pages on the site now load in less than a second, down from eight seconds in late October. The system now operates more than 90% of the time. For some weeks in October, the site was up for only 40% of the time. And the average rate of time-outs or other Web-page failures on the site has dropped to around three-quarters of a percent.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 19, 2013 | By Chris Megerian
SACRAMENTO - California authorities are investigating whether laws were broken when a government regulator went to work for healthcare giant Kaiser Permanente, a company she spent years investigating for the state. Marcy Gallagher was a supervising attorney at the California Department of Managed Health Care, where she participated in several investigations of Kaiser. Last year, she left state employment and joined the company, where she works in a unit that responds to California regulators.
OPINION
October 15, 2013 | By H. Gilbert Welch
Similar populations living in different regions of the United States get exposed to wildly different amounts of medical care. If that sounds like an old story, it is. It's now four decades old. But it is an important story to reflect on as we consider the path forward for our medical care system. In the late 1960s, a nephrologist trained in epidemiology was sent to Burlington, Vt., to run the state's regional medical program. The program was part of the Lyndon B. Johnson administration's effort to bring the advances of modern medicine to all parts of the nation.
BUSINESS
September 14, 2013 | By Chad Terhune
The doctor can't see you now. Consumers may hear that a lot more often after getting health insurance under President Obama's Affordable Care Act. To hold down premiums, major insurers in California have sharply limited the number of doctors and hospitals available to patients in the state's new health insurance market opening Oct. 1. New data reveal the extent of those cuts in California, a crucial test bed for the federal healthcare law....
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 22, 2013 | By Anna Gorman
Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) attacked Republicans on Thursday for their repeated attempts to repeal Obamacare, saying threats to shut down the government or limit the debt ceiling are irresponsible and ineffective. “The big problem we have are Republicans,” she said, speaking at a health center in North Hollywood. “They are the obstacle.” Despite the continued discussions about repeal, Boxer said the states and federal government are moving forward with the Affordable Care Act and plan to begin enrolling people in new coverage options in October.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 10, 2013 | By Paige St. John
California lawyers late Friday filed the state's full appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, asking the high court to set aside orders to reduce prison crowding by the end of December. Despite the state's contention that it intends to meet the prison population cap by leasing added prison space, the appeal raises the public safety threat of "a massive prisoner release. " The appeal cites the great progress the state has made in improving medical and mental health care of inmates.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 17, 2013 | By Chad Terhune
A disjointed financing system for mental health services in California has led to gaps in care, but the national healthcare law is expected to help close some of those holes, according to new research by the California HealthCare Foundation. Half of the state's adults and two-thirds of the adolescents with mental health issues aren't receiving treatment, according to the study . Private insurance has historically lacked mental health services, so patients often seek care through the public system.
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