Health and Poverty News

The Chattanooga Times Free Press, July 14, 2014: Gov. Haslam hits another wall on Medicaid expansion; TennCare application process plan due today

“Haslam said Sunday he personally spoke with Burwell, who succeeded Kathleen Sebelius, about his long-stalled effort to gain federal approval for his ‘Tennessee Plan’ on expanding Medicaid to an additional 160,000 low-income people under the Affordable Care Act.”

The Washington Post, July 13, 2014: (Op-Ed) The real Medicaid problem

“The White House recently put out a 40-page report arguing that the 24 states that have not expanded Medicaid coverage under the Affordable Care Act (ACA or ‘Obamacare’) are hurting their poor and themselves. It’s an easy case to make, but it’s incomplete and misleading. The further truth is that Medicaid also threatens to crowd out spending for many traditional state and local functions: schools, police, roads, libraries and more.”

The Tampa Bay Times, July 13, 2014: PolitiFact Florida: Would Medicaid expansion create 63,000 jobs?

“The White House has new ammunition for those fighting for Medicaid expansion: It would create jobs.”

The Tennessean, July 13, 2014: Nonprofit legal firms keep tabs on TennCare

“TennCare faces the prospect of lawsuits if it fails to set up a state system for people to apply for Medicaid. Attorneys with the Tennessee Justice Center, Southern Poverty Law Center and National Health Law Program are closely watching to see how the agency responds to a federal demand for a correction plan. The plan is expected to be filed Monday.”

The Washington Post, July 11, 2014: (Op-Ed) The Virginia GOP’s Medicaid charade

“Having handed Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) a stinging defeat by refusing to extend Medicaid coverage under Obamacare to as many as 400,000 low-income Virginians, Republican leaders in Richmond now say they intend to convene the legislature in September to conduct a “full and fair” discussion of the question — which they have already decided.”

The Philadelphia Inquirer, July 09, 2014: Phila. sets up centers to help residents get government benefits

“Mayor Nutter's office said Tuesday that it had established six centers where residents will be able to get help applying for a host of government benefits, including food stamps, Medicare, and tax breaks.”

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, July 08, 2014: Corbett care plan cuts aid for disabled

“If enacted, Republican Gov. Tom Corbett’s Healthy PA Medicaid proposal would repeal a program that provides assistance for low- and middle-income workers with disabilities, many of whom would be forced to pay higher health insurance rates in the commercial marketplace.”

The Milwaukee Business Journal, July 09, 2014: Wisconsin Medicaid rolls exceed Gov. Walker estimates, driving $93M shortfall

“Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker's BadgerCare Medicaid program is attracting more low-income, childless adults than his staff had expected - increasing to 111,432 in June - and will result in the need to find $93 million in the state budget to cover the costs.”

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, July 08, 2014: $616,500 to insurer to fix state baby glitch (Subscription Required)

“The private option allows eligible recipients - adults with incomes of up to 138 percent of the poverty level - to sign up for a private plan on the state's health insurance exchange and to have their premiums paid by Medicaid. Pregnant women are normally not eligible for the private option because they qualify under an older, fee-service program that covers expenses related to pregnancy and childbirth for women with incomes of up to 200 percent of the poverty level.”

USA Today, July 07, 2014: (Op-Ed) 'Private option' won't help poor

“Living in poverty is hard enough; having to face sickness without insurance while doing so is a fate no one should bear.”

The Knoxville News-Sentinel, July 06, 2014: Editorial: Failure to expand TennCare taking toll on whole state

“Thousands of Tennesseans would have better access to health care and the state’s economy would receive a boost if lawmakers would accept the federal government’s offer to underwrite an expansion of Medicaid.”

The Palladium-Item, July 07, 2014: (Op-Ed) Healthy Indiana Plan 2.0 helps fix broken Medicaid system

“If approved, the Healthy Indiana Plan 2.0 would replace traditional Medicaid for low-income able-bodied Hoosier adults. Unlike traditional Medicaid, which is government-driven, HIP 2.0 is consumer-driven. It allows participants to take greater control over their own health-care decisions through POWER accounts, which are essentially health savings accounts.”

The Tampa Bay Business Journal, July 07, 2014: Florida hospitals ordered to repay $267 million in federal Medicaid funds

“The federal government is seeking to take back $267 million from Florida hospitals in funds it says it overpaid for care for low-income patients.”

The Stevens Point Journal, July 06, 2014: Counties push back against Walker's BadgerCare decision

“Walker was among about 25 governors who declined federal funding to expand Medicaid in their states. Under the Affordable Care Act, states were allowed to expand their Medicaid programs to cover people earning up to 138 percent of the poverty level. Walker chose to expand the program only for those earning 100 percent of the poverty level and said his approach would keep everyone living below the poverty line covered.”

The Tampa Bay Times, July 03, 2014: Demand that hospitals repay Medicaid funds latest sign of D.C.-Tallahassee rift

“The federal government wants to recover $267 million from Florida hospitals it says were paid too much to care for the poor. And it wants the entire amount this year - a demand that is hitting safety-net hospitals like Jackson Memorial in Miami and Tampa General hard.”

USA Today, July 03, 2014: Without federal action, states move on long-term care

“Three years after the demise of the long-term care piece of the Affordable Care Act, some states are retooling their Medicaid programs to maximize the number of people who can get care at home and minimize the number who have to become poor to receive help.”

The Columbus Dispatch, July 02, 2014: White House report touts Medicaid expansion in Ohio

“Ohio’s decision to expand Medicaid has led to a decline in the number of uninsured, added jobs and improved access to cholesterol screenings, mammograms and other preventive care, a new report says.”

The Knoxville News-Sentinel, July 02, 2014: Report: Medicaid expansion would benefit thousands in Tennessee

“If the plan wins federal approval, the state would use its federal Medicaid expansion money to buy private insurance for low-income residents instead of expanding traditional Medicaid.”

The Nashua Telegraph, July 02, 2014: Sign-ups begin for health insurance program for lower-income NH residents

“New Hampshire became the 26th state to embrace the federal health law’s expanded Medicaid program, with as many as 50,000 low-income residents expected to begin signing up.”

The Boston Globe, July 01, 2014: No money set aside for shift in Medicaid

“The stopgap program that enrolled tens of thousands of people in temporary Medicaid coverage after the failure of the Massachusetts health insurance website is not going to have a big effect on the state budget, at least not by the Legislature’s reckoning.”

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, July 01, 2014: White House begins new push for Medicaid expansion

“So far, 26 states and the District of Columbia have agreed to expand Medicaid coverage, providing coverage to 5.2 million more people.”

The Journal and Courier, July 01, 2014: (Op-Ed) Pence: Indiana’s plan is the change Medicaid needs

“Today, Indiana submitted its proposal for the Healthy Indiana Plan 2.0 to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. If approved, the Healthy Indiana Plan 2.0 (HIP 2.0) would replace traditional Medicaid for low-income, able-bodied Hoosier adults. Unlike traditional Medicaid, which is government-driven, HIP 2.0 is consumer-driven. It allows participants to take greater control over their own health care decisions through POWER accounts, which are essentially health savings accounts.”

The Hendricks County Flyer, July 01, 2014: Full-service health center to serve homeless patients

“Eskenazi Health and Horizon House recently opened a new health center aimed at meeting the health care needs of individuals experiencing homelessness in Indianapolis.”

The Miami Herald, June 30, 2014: Medicaid managed care arrives Tuesday in South Florida

“Beginning Tuesday, more than a half million South Floridians, mostly children and women, will begin receiving their government-subsidized healthcare through private insurers, part of an effort to move about 3.6 million Floridians on Medicaid to a managed care model that lawmakers believe will cut costs.”

The Dayton Daily News, June 29, 2014: Hospital costs fall with expanded Medicaid (Subscription Required)

“Ohio's decision to expand Medicaid has resulted in a sharp decline in the number of uninsured patients showing up for free treatment at local hospitals. But hospital officials were quick to point out the savings on so-called charity care for low-income patients must be balanced against financial pressures in other areas of operation before they can determine the true impact on their bottom lines.”