David's Feed
Jul 31, 2013

Obamacare technology testing slated for September: official

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Obama administration is preparing to subject the information technology backbone of the new state and federal healthcare exchanges to final “dress rehearsal” testing that could continue until just before the online marketplaces are slated to begin enrollment on October 1.

The administration “has already completed the majority of the development of the services required to support open enrollment beginning on October 1,” Marilyn Tavenner, administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, or CMS, said in written testimony that appeared on the website of a congressional oversight committee on Wednesday.

Jul 30, 2013

‘Obamacare’ mandate delay will cost $12 billion, affect 1 million workers

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama’s decision to delay implementation of part of his healthcare reform law will cost $12 billion and leave a million fewer Americans with employer-sponsored health insurance in 2014, congressional researchers said Tuesday.

The report by the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office is the first authoritative estimate of the human and fiscal cost from the administration’s unexpected one-year delay announced July 2 of the employer mandate – a requirement for larger businesses to provide health coverage for their workers or pay a penalty.

Jul 25, 2013

Republicans prepare for ‘Obamacare’ showdown, with eye to 2014 elections

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – With the Obama administration poised for a huge public education campaign on healthcare reform, Republicans and their allies are mobilizing a counter-offensive including town hall meetings, protests and media promotions to dissuade uninsured Americans from obtaining health coverage.

Party officials, political analysts and lobbyists say the coming showdown will mark a new phase in the years-old battle over healthcare reform by shifting the focus from political ideology to specific examples of how “Obamacare” allegedly falls short, just as the administration presses the public on its benefits.

Jul 18, 2013

U.S. sees lower-than-expected Obamacare insurance costs

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Hoping to gain the high ground in an escalating war of words over Obamacare, the U.S. administration on Thursday forecast sharply lower than expected insurance costs for consumers and small businesses in new online state healthcare exchanges.

A report by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) said data from 10 states and the District of Columbia shows preliminary 2014 premiums on the lowest-cost mid-range “silver” plans in those marketplaces to be 18 percent lower on average than earlier administration and congressional estimates.

Jul 16, 2013

U.S. administration defends Obamacare contractor after UK probe

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Obama administration on Tuesday defended a decision to award outsourcing company Serco Inc a $1.25 billion contract to help implement new online health insurance exchanges after word the contractor’s parent company was under investigation in Britain.

Serco Inc, U.S. subsidiary of Serco Group Plc, will help review and process paper applications from consumers who apply for subsidized insurance coverage through federally operated exchanges in 34 states, according to the 12-year contract awarded by the Department of Health and Human Services.

Jul 14, 2013

Analysis: Obamacare struggles to meet make-or-break deadline

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – With time running out, U.S. officials are struggling to cope with the task of launching the new online health insurance exchanges at the heart of President Barack Obama’s signature health reforms by an October 1 deadline.

The White House, and federal agencies including the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), must ensure that working marketplaces open for enrollment in all 50 states in less than 80 days, and are responding to mounting pressure by concentrating on three essential areas that will determine whether the most critical phase of Obamacare succeeds or fails.

Jul 14, 2013

Obamacare struggles to meet make-or-break deadline

WASHINGTON, July 14 (Reuters) – With time running out, U.S.
officials are struggling to cope with the task of launching the
new online health insurance exchanges at the heart of President
Barack Obama’s signature health reforms by an Oct. 1 deadline.

The White House, and federal agencies including the
Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Internal
Revenue Service (IRS), must ensure that working marketplaces
open for enrollment in all 50 states in less than 80 days, and
are responding to mounting pressure by concentrating on three
essential areas that will determine whether the most critical
phase of Obamacare succeeds or fails.

Jul 9, 2013

Republicans press White House to delay key Obamacare mandate

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Congressional Republicans pressed President Barack Obama on Tuesday to delay a requirement under his healthcare law for Americans to obtain insurance next year after the administration gave employers a one-year reprieve from having to provide it to staff.

The U.S. Treasury and White House announced last week that businesses would not be required to offer health coverage, or pay a fine, in 2014 because the administration had not issued final regulations in time for employers to comply.

Jul 8, 2013

U.S. relaxes health law income, insurance status rule for exchanges

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Days after delaying health insurance requirements for employers, the Obama administration has decided to roll back requirements for new state online insurance marketplaces to verify the income and health coverage status of people who apply for subsidized coverage.

President Barack Obama’s healthcare reform law is slated to begin offering health coverage through state marketplaces, or exchanges, beginning October 1. But to receive tax subsidies to help buy insurance, enrollees must have incomes ranging from 100 percent to 400 percent of the federal poverty line and not have access to affordable insurance through an employer.

Jul 3, 2013

Analysis: Could the U.S. delay Obamacare’s mandate for individuals, too?

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama can expect mounting pressure to make new concessions on healthcare reform, especially the requirement that all Americans obtain insurance, after delaying penalties for businesses for the first year of his plan.

The U.S. Treasury said late on Tuesday it would grant businesses with 50 or more workers a one-year reprieve from having to provide health coverage to full-time staff.

    • 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."
    • Follow David