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April 14, 2014 | By Michael A. Memoli
WASHINGTON - Lower-than-expected health insurance premiums under Obamacare will help cut the long-term cost of the program 7% over the next decade, according to the latest report from the Congressional Budget Office. The government's reduction of $104 billion in subsidies for those premiums was the main factor that led the nonpartisan fiscal watchdog to cut its projection of the nation's federal deficit by nearly $300 billion through 2024. According to the CBO report, released Monday, the average annual premium for the new healthcare exchanges' mid-level Silver plan - used as a benchmark - is expected to be $4,400 by 2016.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 13, 2014 | By Soumya Karlamangla
For nearly two decades, Barbara Garnaus maintained a modest, delicate life balance: keeping her part-time Orange County school district job and juggling her bills and credit card debt. Now 63, living alone, she counts every dollar, has no cellphone and commutes an hour in traffic so she can keep an affordable apartment in Laguna Woods. Having good health helped. Garnaus got by without medical insurance, relying on yearly exams at a free clinic. But that changed last year: Garnaus now needs treatment for cancer, and she bought insurance under Obamacare.
HEALTH
April 12, 2014 | Rene Lynch
Hers is the Cinderella story of the fitness world. At age 40, Tosca Reno says she was nearly 80 pounds overweight, depressed and clinging to a bad marriage because, as a stay-at-home mother, she feared she couldn't raise her three young girls on her own. Today, at 53, she is one of the most recognized celebrities in the fitness world -- and not only because she recently posed for the cover of Oxygen magazine in a blue bikini that showed off...
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 12, 2014 | By Paige St. John
FRENCH CAMP, Calif. - California's $840-million medical prison - the largest in the nation - was built to provide care to more than 1,800 inmates. When fully operational, it was supposed to help the state's prison system emerge from a decade of federal oversight brought on by the persistent neglect and poor medical treatment of inmates. But since opening in July, the state-of-the-art California Health Care Facility has been beset by waste, mismanagement and miscommunication between the prison and medical staffs.
NATIONAL
April 11, 2014
By Christi Parsons and Michael A. Memoli WASHINGTON - President Obama named White House budget director Sylvia Mathews Burwell to take over the Department of Health and Human Services on Friday, saying there was "no manager as experienced and as competent" to oversee the next phase of his signature healthcare law. "Sylvia was a rock, a steady hand on the wheel" as the administration dealt with the government shutdown last year, Obama told a...
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 11, 2014 | By Dan Weikel and Ralph Vartabedian
State and federal investigators probing the cause of the fiery collision between a FedEx big rig and a charter bus in Northern California will delve into a wide range of factors from the health and rest of the truck driver to emergency exits and fire protection for bus passengers. "This is a very significant and unfortunate tragedy," said Jim Hall, a transportation safety consultant and former chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board. "The NTSB is going to have its hands full on this one. " Although the cause of the accident has yet to be determined, Hall and other safety advocates say it could focus new attention on the NTSB's efforts to improve bus safety and the behind-the-scenes battle over safety standards for motor coaches and other commercial vehicles.
NATIONAL
April 10, 2014 | By Noam N. Levey and Christi Parsons
WASHINGTON - Kathleen Sebelius, who helped guide the rocky and controversial rollout of President Obama's landmark health law, has resigned as Health and Human Services secretary after more than five years. In her place, the president plans as soon as Friday to nominate Sylvia Mathews Burwell, director of the White House Office of Management and Budget, according to a senior administration official. Sebelius was not pressured to resign, the official said. But she leaves after presiding over the disastrous launch of the health law's online insurance marketplaces last fall.
NEWS
April 10, 2014 | By Daniel Rothberg, This post has been corrected, as indicated below.
WASHINGTON -- Enrollment in healthcare exchanges created under Obamacare has risen to 7.5 million and is expected to continue increasing, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius told a Senate committee Thursday. Sebelius' announcement marks a 400,000-person uptick since Obama announced last week that 7.1 million Americans had signed up for coverage through marketplaces on the final day of open enrollment. The administration's original tally didn't include Americans who, because of issues signing up, received an extension until April 15. "During these past six months, millions have obtained the security and peace-of-mind of affordable health coverage," Sebelius said during a Senate Finance Committee hearing about her department's budget for 2015.
WORLD
April 9, 2014 | By Sherif Tarek
Algeria's longtime President Abdelaziz Bouteflika appears a shoo-in to win reelection during the national vote scheduled for April 17, despite concerns about his health and criticism of the government's strict control. Bouteflika , who has been in power since 1999, has made few television appearances during his presidential campaign, which has brought into question his physical ability to stay at the helm. In addition, opponents have criticized the Algerian leadership, saying the country is run by oligarchs from the ruling National Liberation Front and army generals.
NATIONAL
April 7, 2014 | By Jenny Deam
DENVER - It was spring break, and Levy Thamba, a 19-year-old college student from Africa, had checked into a fourth-floor hotel room with three of his buddies. They had come from their small college in Wyoming looking for an adventure. No one is sure how much Thamba ate of the marijuana cookie purchased by one of his friends at a local pot shop. But soon the engineering student, who had never tried marijuana before, began acting strangely hostile, tearing around the room and pulling pictures from the wall.
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