National

The Verdict is In: Obamacare Lowers Uninsured

  (Politico) – The evidence is piling up now: Obamacare really does seem to be helping the uninsured. Survey after survey is showing that the number of uninsured people has been going down since the start of enrollment last fall. The numbers don’t all match, Read More

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Health

Sebelius: 7.5 Million Now Signed Up

ERICA WERNER, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — Enrollment for the president’s health care law has grown to 7.5 million Americans, the Obama administration announced Thursday, handing President Barack Obama and the Democrats bigger coverage numbers to tout in the face of election-year attacks. Sign-ups for Read More

Religion

These Claims Shouldn’t Have a Prayer

[Los Angeles Times] Are secular, for-profit corporations free to violate the rights of their employees by claiming that the law violates their corporate religious conscience? That’s the big question at the heart of the two blockbuster challenges to a key provision of Obamacare that will be heard Read More

Politics

White House Pushes for Black Enrollees

[The Hill] The Obama administration is engaged in a “final coordinated push” to enroll blacks in ObamaCare, White House senior adviser Valerie Jarrett said Friday. Jarrett said blacks have a “disproportionately low rate of coverage,” and called enrolling them the administration’s “top priority.” “We still have Read More

Politics

The Morning Plum: Obama, Race, and the Affordable Care Act

[The Washington Post] President Obama gave a series of comments to the New Yorker’s David Remnick that, predictably, are attracting attention this morning because he said: “There’s no doubt that there’s some folks who just really dislike me because they don’t like the idea of a black President.” Obama also said Read More

Health

Insurance Plan for Sickest Gets Another Extension

WASHINGTON (AP) — Health insurance companies can no longer turn away people with medical problems, but the Obama administration isn’t taking any chances with thousands of vulnerable patients in a special federal program. The administration announced Tuesday it is granting a two-month extension for the Read More

Op-Ed

Bold Predictions for 2014

By Raynard Jackson NNPA Columnist   Now that a 2014 has come, I have decided to pull out my trusted crystal ball and give you some of my predictions for the year. I think the biggest thing to watch is on the political front.  This Read More

No Picture
Op-Ed

WWRDH: What Would Republicans Do on Healthcare?

By George E. Curry NNPA Columnist Many ardent conservatives are critical of the Affordable Care Act or what they derisively call “Obamacare.” But what are they proposing that proves that they care about uninsured Americans? The Tampa Bay Times’ “Pundit Fact” team discovered some interesting findings when they approached Read More

National

Health Law Business Insurance Site Delayed 1 Year

CARLA K. JOHNSON, AP Medical Writer CHICAGO (AP) — The Obama administration is delaying yet another aspect of the health care law, putting off until next November the launch of an online portal to the health insurance marketplace for small businesses. The move, announced Wednesday, Read More

National

Supreme Court Will Take Up New Health Law Dispute

MARK SHERMAN, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court agreed Tuesday to referee another dispute over President Barack Obama’s health care law, whether businesses can use religious objections to escape a requirement to cover birth control for employees. The justices said they will take Read More

Business

Affordable Care Act Will Create More Jobs

By Jazelle Hunt NNPA Washington Correspondent  WASHINGTON (NNPA) – Health care reform under the Affordable Care Act is off to a sickly start. There have been problems with the main marketplace website, calls for Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius’ resignation, tepid enrollment numbers, Read More

Politics

Analysis: Republicans Plan 2014 Campaign Around Obamacare Chaos

(Reuters) – Just a few short weeks ago, Republican elders could only hope that time would make voters forget about the government shutdown the party engineered in October. Now, with millions of Americans in an uproar over health insurance policies canceled because of President Barack Obama’s health care law, Read More

No Picture
Op-Ed

Republicans’ Crocodile Tears over Health Care

By George E. Curry NNPA Columnist   Republicans have no shame. After House Republicans voted more than 40 times to block implementation of what they derisively call Obamacare, they have the temerity to complain that the Obama administration flubbed the Oct. 1 rollout of the Read More

Politics

U.S. House Democrats Clamor for Obamacare Fix This Week

(Reuters) – U.S. House of Representatives Democrats, seething over the botched startup of President Barack Obama’s healthcare law, are urging U.S. officials to swiftly help people whose existing insurance policies are being canceled due to Obamacare. Democrats are facing a potentially difficult House vote on Read More

Politics

White House Releasing Health Enrollments Wednesday

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Obama administration will release the first round of health insurance enrollment numbers Wednesday afternoon. Officials have been lowering expectations for the numbers, given the widespread technical issues with the sign-up website. The tightly held numbers are believed to amount to only Read More

Politics

Obama on Defensive over Healthcare Glitches

By Freddie Allen NNPA Washington Correspondent WASHINGTON (NNPA) – Under unrelenting attacks –including from Democratic supporters – President Obama and White House officials continue to struggle as they try to blunt criticism that that President Obama stretched the truth in describing coverage options for consumers Read More

Health

New Rule Demands Parity for Mental Health Coverage

KEVIN FREKING, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — It’s final: Health insurance companies must cover mental illness and substance abuse just as they cover physical diseases. The Obama administration issued new regulations Friday that spell out how a 5-year-old mental health parity law will be administered. Read More

Politics

Obama Apologizes to People Losing Health Coverage

by JULIE PACE, AP White House Correspondent WASHINGTON (AP) — Bowing to intense criticism, President Barack Obama apologized to Americans who are losing health insurance plans he had repeatedly said they could keep and pledged to find fixes that might allow people to keep their Read More

Politics

Health Insurance Website Stumbles on Launch

By Freddie Allen NNPA Washington Correspondent WASHINGTON (NNPA) – Last week, President Barack Obama said what many people who visited healthcare.gov to browse and buy affordable health insurance already knew: The website, tied so heavily to the success of the Affordable Care Act, wasn’t working Read More

Politics

Website Contractors Point Fingers at Obama Admin.

By Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar and Stephen Ohlemacher, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — Contractors who built the web portal for the Obama administration’s health insurance marketplace said Thursday the site’s crippling problems trace back to insufficient testing and changes that government officials made just prior to going Read More

Politics

White House Steps Up Damage Control on Healthcare Rollout

(Reuters) – The White House sought to limit the political damage from the troubled rollout of the government’s healthcare website on Wednesday as Republicans increased the pressure to delay parts of President Barack Obama’s signature domestic policy. Obama administration officials held a closed-door briefing for Democrats in Read More

No Picture
Op-Ed

The Delusional Tea Party Republicans

By Lee A. Daniels NNPA Columnist As these words are being written, the Obama administration is trying to end a shutdown of the United States government forced by the refusal of the Republican bloc of the House of Representatives to vote on a continued funding Read More

Health

Obamacare Glitches Still Plague Health Exchanges

[CNBC] Hurry up and wait—for your Obamacare health insurance. Two days after Tuesday’s launch of government-run health insurance marketplaces, technological problems continue to prevent many people from checking out prices and enrolling via the online sites. The lags and service suspensions—which the marketplaces attribute primarily Read More

Health

Insurance Markets Open To Surge Of New Customers

CHICAGO (AP) – The online insurance marketplaces that are at the heart of President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul struggled to handle the wave of new consumers Tuesday, the first day of a six-month open-enrollment period. A combination of high demand and technical glitches seemed Read More

Politics

Government Shutdown Harder on Black Workers

By George E. Curry NNPA Editor-in-Chief WASHINGTON (NNPA) – Although the shutdown of the federal government that began Tuesday is affecting all Americans, a disproportionate portion of the 800,000 furloughed federal workers are African Americans, according to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management. Because government Read More

No Picture
Business

Government Shutdown Starts to Slow Lending Activity

[ABC News] As 800,000 federal workers are sent home following the government shutdown, lending to households and small businesses has been halted or slowed. The government’s Small Business Administration, Federal Housing Administration and the Agriculture Department’s Farm Service Agency are essentially out of reach for many Read More

No Picture
Op-Ed

Republicans’ Venom Aimed at Obama

By Julianne Malveaux NNPA Columnist At press time, it was unclear whether Congress would finally evade a government shutdown on October 1.  I do know, however, that I am sick of the budgetary brinkmanship that plagues our government.  Every few months there is some crisis or Read More

No Picture
Op-Ed

The Truth about ‘Obamacare’

By George E. Curry NNPA Columnist   Major provisions of the Affordable Care Act went into effect on Tuesday and, like all new programs, there was a certain amount of uncertainty and confusion.  But making things worse are the deliberate lies that have been told by what Read More

Health

Obamacare blitz: Can US persuade young ‘invincibles’ to buy health coverage?

[THE CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR] In Oregon, folk singers croon about the state’s health insurance exchange in artsy television ads. Connecticut is passing out “Get covered” sunscreen at the beach, and a Colorado poster features a young man with a “winner” medal, fists pumped, and the slogan Read More

Health

Better Healthcare for Less Money, if You Can Find It

(Reuters) – Consumers intrigued by the new model of accountable healthcare – which promises better-coordinated care that could save lots of money – are going to have to actively seek out participating providers. A tenet of accountable care is better quality: doctors are paid to Read More

Health

Obamacare starts in 99 days. These 99 things need to happen before then.

[The Washington Post] Welcome to Health Reform Watch, Sarah Kliff’s regular look at how the Affordable Care Act is changing the American health-care system — and being changed by it. You can reach Sarah with questions, comments and suggestions here. Check back every Monday, Wednesday and Read More