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The COBRA Subsidy and Health Insurance for the Unemployed

With the nation’s unemployment rate rising to its highest levels in decades as a result of the recession, many families have lost their employer-sponsored health coverage or are at risk of doing so. In an effort to help people maintain coverage after a layoff, the stimulus legislation known as the…

Explaining Health Care Reform: Questions About Health Insurance Exchanges

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), signed into law in March 2010, made broad changes to the way health insurance will be provided and paid for in the United States. PPACA created a new mechanism for purchasing coverage called Exchanges, which are entities that will be set up…

Better Care & Lower Costs: Exploring the Promise of Patient Engagement

03/05/10 Engaging consumers more directly in their care may improve health outcomes and help control the costs of care. This briefing, cosponsored by the Alliance for Health Reform and the AARP Public Policy Institute, focused on the potential for changing consumer behavior to promote the use of effective interventions and…

Issues for Structuring Interim High-Risk Pools

One of the first provisions that would be implemented under federal health reform bills in the House and the Senate would establish a national high-risk pool program to offer coverage to otherwise uninsurable individuals during the interim period between enactment and implementation of broader health care reforms. High-risk pools provide…

Consumers’ Experience in Massachusetts: Lessons For National Health Reform

This report examines the impact of state health reform efforts on the lives of ordinary people in Massachusetts, including a look at coverage provided by both public programs and private sources. It focuses specifically on people’s ability to afford and obtain needed care. Report (.pdf)

Health Reform: Lessons From Massachusetts

As Congress debates comprehensive national health reform, the Kaiser Family Foundation has two reports and an updated fact sheet that examine state-level health reform in Massachusetts and the lessons it offers for policymakers in Washington. Consumers’ Experience in Massachusetts: Lessons For National Health Reform and In Pursuit of Affordable Health…

Pulling it Together: Last Week’s Health Reform “Shocker”

Last week we learned that health reform could cost the federal government at least a trillion dollars over ten years, and that it will be really difficult to forge bipartisan agreement on legislation and keep major interest groups on board. This obviously brought more angst to the deliberations, several Republicans…

Pulling it Together: The Sleeper in Health Reform

The health reform legislation currently being crafted on Capitol Hill is undeniably complex.  To oversimplify slightly it can be boiled down into four parts: coverage (subsidies for private coverage and Medicaid expansions); delivery and payment reforms; insurance market reforms and regulations; and prevention, with each broad category containing a range…

Explaining Health Care Reform: What is Health Insurance?

A key element in any comprehensive health reform plan is defining what health insurance is and the amount of insurance coverage people will have. There are two components to that coverage: the types of services covered (e.g., physician care, hospitalization, prescription drugs, etc.), and the cost sharing required of enrollees…

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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.