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Feb 25, 2014

U.S. Medicare chief defends proposed Part D drug benefit reforms

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Obama administration’s top Medicare official on Tuesday defended proposed changes to the popular Part D drug benefits program for the elderly and disabled that are fiercely opposed by a broad network of drugmakers, insurers, healthcare providers and patient advocates.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed a new rule in January that would fundamentally alter the program’s private insurance coverage for certain drugs, change the pharmacy networks that some plans cover and limit the number of policies available to beneficiaries in any given region.

Feb 14, 2014

Obamacare enrollment push for the young enters 11th hour

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – One of the latest Obamacare pitches to get young adults to sign up for health insurance starts out with a mother’s kitchen note reminding her grown son to enroll.

“Mom, you know I can’t afford it,” the young black man protests, as he sits down at a kitchen table next to a bespectacled woman with a laptop computer linked to the U.S. federal enrollment website, HealthCare.gov.

Feb 12, 2014

U.S. says 3.3 mln have enrolled in private Obamacare coverage

WASHINGTON, Feb 12 (Reuters) – The Obama administration on
Wednesday said the number of people who have enrolled in private
Obamacare health plans rose to 3.3 million from Oct. 1 to Feb.
1, providing new evidence that its effort to extend coverage to
the uninsured is gaining momentum.

Data collected from new health insurance marketplaces set up
in all 50 states, under President Barack Obama’s healthcare law,
showed enrollment rising by 1.1 million or 53 percent in January
and surpassing a government projection set before the botched
rollout of the federal website HealthCare.gov.

Feb 11, 2014

Obama defends latest delay to his healthcare law

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama on Tuesday defended the latest delay in his healthcare law’s employer mandate, saying it follows similar relief his administration has already given to certain individuals.

In an apparent response to heightened Republican criticism, the president also asserted that the law known as Obamacare will be “good for” the U.S. economy, despite a recent government estimate that it will shrink the labor force by the equivalent of 2.5 million full-time workers over the next decade.

Feb 9, 2014

Democrats promote positive message on Obamacare and work hours

WASHINGTON, Feb 9 (Reuters) – Democrats sought to turn the
latest controversy over Obamacare and the economy into a
positive political message on Sunday by casting an expected
decline in American work hours as a boon to worker freedom and
family values.

In a new partisan tussle over election messaging that is
likely to color this year’s congressional mid-term campaign,
Democratic lawmakers said a predicted drop in work hours brought
about by Obamacare would mean more family time for mothers, more
study opportunities for college students and less job stress for
older workers.

Feb 4, 2014

Obamacare to cut work hours by equivalent of two million jobs: CBO

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama’s healthcare law will reduce American workforce participation by the equivalent of 2 million full-time jobs in 2017, the Congressional Budget Office said on Tuesday in a report that could fuel Republican efforts to paint the law as a job killer.

In its latest U.S. fiscal outlook, the nonpartisan CBO said the health law would prompt some lower-income workers to limit their hours to avoid losing federal subsidies that are available under the law to help pay for health insurance.

Jan 31, 2014

Two Obamacare exchanges see more health insurer competition

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – At least two U.S. states running their own Obamacare health insurance exchanges expect new insurers to enter their marketplaces and bolster competition in 2015, officials said on Friday.

Kynect, which is Kentucky’s marketplace, and the Rhode Island Health Benefits Exchange have had separate talks about 2015 with health insurers that could opt to join the online marketplaces set up under President Barack Obama’s healthcare reform law. Kentucky also expects an expansion of physician networks available within current plans.

Jan 30, 2014

U.S. says results encouraging for healthcare delivery reforms

WASHINGTON, Jan 30 (Reuters) – The Obama administration on
Thursday reported what it called encouraging results from
efforts to reduce healthcare costs and improve the quality of
care for more than 5 million Medicare beneficiaries under

As part of President Barack Obama’s healthcare reform law,
the efforts center around more than 360 accountable care
organizations (ACOs), which are networks of doctors, hospitals
and other providers specially organized to help move Medicare
away from traditional fee-for-service medicine.

Jan 27, 2014

Three Republican senators offer Obamacare alternative

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Three prominent Republican senators on Monday called for replacing Obamacare with a package of election-year proposals intended to lower health insurance costs while retaining some elements of President Barack Obama’s health reform law.

Senators Richard Burr of North Carolina, Tom Coburn of Oklahoma and Orrin Hatch of Utah released a legislative blueprint that analysts say could help the Republican Party offer a much-needed vision for healthcare ahead of November’s mid-term congressional elections, voting that will determine which party controls Congress in the final two years of the Obama presidency.

Jan 24, 2014

Obamacare coverage enrollment hits 3 million -official

WASHINGTON, Jan 24 (Reuters) – The number of people enrolled
in private health insurance under Obamacare has soared by more
than one-third in recent weeks to around 3 million, according to
government data released on Friday.

Marilyn Tavenner, administrator of the U.S. Centers for
Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), announced the preliminary
tally in a blog posting. She forecast that enrollment through
new federal and state health insurance marketplaces would
continue to grow in coming weeks as a public outreach campaign

    • About David

      "David Morgan has covered news from Wall Street and Fleet Street to the White House, the Pentagon and Congress, including politics, macroeconomics, military affairs, corporate finance, U.S. intelligence, national security and the international markets. He has also reported from Atlanta on the rise of American conservatism, civil rights, homegrown terrorism and the Olympics, and helped chronicle the Sept. 11 attacks and their aftermath from Philadelphia, New York and Washington."
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