February 6, 2014
Re "State aid is relief, burden," Feb. 3 Who are the supporters of national healthcare reform who "tout the expansion of Medicaid - called Medi-Cal in California - as one of the great successes of the Affordable Care Act"? Medi-Cal has been failing since its underfunded inception almost 50 years ago. Confirmation of eligibility for the program does not guarantee timely healthcare, as the number of physicians in the program is embarrassingly low. The Affordable Care Act, as with our entire dysfunctional healthcare system, guarantees delays, disappointments and, unfortunately, sometimes death to those without the means to buy better care.
January 2, 2014 |
An Oregon Medicaid expansion program found that low-income adults who were covered by government health insurance had visited hospital emergency rooms 40% more often than other adults. The study , published online Thursday in the journal Science , comes at a time when many states are expanding Medicaid as part of the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare. While federal and state policymakers have argued that expanding Medicaid would reduce costly and inefficient use of hospital emergency rooms by increasing access to primary healthcare, the Science study suggests this is not the case.
December 29, 2013 |
This was the year that millions of Americans learned that health insurance is complicated. The landscape they discovered is ugly. Paying a premium doesn't mean your costs are over. Lower premiums mean higher deductibles, higher fees at the doctor's office, higher prescription costs. You may have to pay more to see a certain doctor or go to a certain hospital. After New Year's Day 2014, the discoveries will keep coming, when many of the newly insured use their policies for the first time.
December 17, 2013 |
It was always the case that the nation's medically uninsured were disproportionately non-white, poor and southern. These people were the prime targets of the Affordable Care Act, which aimed to bring them coverage in part by the federally-funded expansion of Medicaid. Two surveys released Tuesday by the Kaiser Family Foundation show how the demographics of the uninsured will change, thanks to the ACA. More precisely, the surveys show how they will change as a result of inaction -- the failure of 25 states to expand Medicaid, which the ACA's drafters expected to address the coverage problems of the poor.
December 14, 2013 |
Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett has lately been getting credit in the political press for being one of those Republican governors coming around on the expansion of Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. Advocates for the underprivileged can't understand why. They're right to wonder. Corbett's "Healthy Pennsylvania" plan, which was released for public comment this week, is a sham. It would reduce health benefits for many of his neediest citizens and impose punitive conditions on their coverage.
December 5, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - Current and former Russian diplomats in New York claimed poverty to fraudulently collect Medicaid for their pregnant wives and children while shopping at Prada and Tiffany's and taking cruise vacations, the U.S. government charged Thursday. The Justice Department said 49 Russians or their spouses currently or formerly attached to the Russian Consulate, United Nations or trade missions illegally collected $1.5 million in benefits over about a decade in New York City. Income levels were falsified in Medicaid applications signed by senior Russian officials in what U.S. Atty.