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Abortion Coverage in Marketplace Plans, 2015

This brief analyzes state policies and insurer coverage decisions affecting the availability of abortion coverage in 2015 insurance plans offered through the Marketplaces. It finds that abortion coverage is unavailable in a total of 31 states, 24 of which have enacted laws that ban or restrict abortion coverage in plans sold through their Marketplaces and 7 of which have no abortion coverage restrictions but also have no Marketplace plans offering it.

Federal and State Standards for “Essential Community Providers” under the ACA and Implications for Women’s Health

Safety net providers such as community health centers and family planning clinics have served a significant role in the provision of primary care and reproductive health care services to low-income and uninsured people, particularly women. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) has a provision aimed at assuring that newly-insured individuals, as well as those without coverage, can continue seeing their trusted safety net providers, also called Essential Community Providers (ECPs). This brief reviews the definition of ECPs, examines the federal and state rules that govern the extent to which plans must include these providers in their networks, identifies the variation from state to state, and discusses the particular importance of these rules and providers for women’s access to care.

Safety-Net Emergency Departments: A Look at Current Experiences and Challenges

Safety-net hospital emergency departments (EDs) are an important part of our health care system, especially, but not only, for the uninsured and others with low income. With multiple major changes unfolding in our system today, including the development of new models of health care delivery, payment reforms, expanded insurance coverage, and increasing demand for primary care access, safety-net EDs are a sort of crucible in which these shifts and transitions can be seen playing out. To understand more about their current experiences and challenges as the Affordable Care Act (ACA) begins to takes hold, we conducted interviews with ED directors in a convenience sample of 15 safety-net hospitals around the country in June and July 2014.

Web Briefing: Early Impacts of the Medicaid Expansion for the Homeless Population

The Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion provides a significant opportunity to increase health coverage and improve access to care for individuals experiencing homelessness, who historically have had high uninsured rates and often have multiple, complex physical and mental health needs. On Monday, December 15, 2014, the Kaiser Family Foundation hosted a…

Key Findings on Medicaid Managed Care: Highlights from the Medicaid Managed Care Market Tracker

This report highlights 10 key findings on the Medicaid managed care market, based on analysis of data included in the Kaiser Family Foundation’s Medicaid Managed Care Market Tracker. The findings provide a partial profile of the Medicaid MCO market nationally and by state. They also illuminate the involvement of large, multi-state health insurance companies in the Medicaid market and the participation of these firms in other markets as well, including the managed long-term services and supports market, the new ACA marketplaces, and the Medicare Advantage market. Finally, these selected highlights serve to illustrate the array of ways the Tracker can be used to understand more about the Medicaid managed care market and its place in the broader market.

Briefing on the ACA in CA: Year One & Beyond

Continuing an effort to explore Affordable Care Act (ACA) implementation in the states, the Kaiser Family Foundation and the Blue Shield of California Foundation examined ACA implementation in California (CA) at a Sacramento, Calif. briefing and panel discussion on May 28. A state official, experts and advocates discussed issues and challenges related to implementation of the law, and the practical impact of providing coverage to roughly 4.5 million Californians who have coverage via the state marketplace or the Medi-Cal expansion.

Medicare Spending Cuts and Hospital Productivity Gains

In this column for The Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank, Drew Altman and guest co-author Dana Goldman examine hospital productivity gains, and what they may mean for hospitals’ ability to absorb spending reductions.

Medicare Spending Cuts and Hospital Productivity Gains

In his latest column for The Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank, Drew Altman and guest co-author Dana Goldman examine hospital productivity gains, and what they may mean for hospitals’ ability to absorb spending reductions. All previous columns by Drew Altman are available online.

Awaiting New Medicaid Managed Care Rules: Key Issues to Watch

More than half of all Medicaid beneficiaries now receive their services in risk-based managed care plans, and states’ use of managed care is expanding. States operate their own Medicaid managed care programs within federal rules and requirements. The federal regulations were last updated in 2002 and a new proposed rule is expected in Spring 2015. This brief identifies key issues in the regulation and discusses how CMS might address them.

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.