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How Private Insurance Works: A Primer

This primer, prepared by Gary Claxton of the Institute for Health Care Research and Policy at Georgetown University, examines the structure and operation of private health insurance including the types of organizations that provide it, how managed care is delivered, and how risk pools work and describes how private health…

Protection For Consumers In Managed Care Plans: A Comparison Of Medicare, Medicaid and the Private Insurance Market

This policy paper describes key requirements of consumer protection regulation under Medicare, Medicaid and federal and state laws as they apply to private health insurance. These include choice and availability of plans, disclosure of information, marketing, access, quality, and the grievance and appeals process. The discussion highlights differences and similarities…

New Survey on Consumer Experiences with Health Plans

Survey on Consumer Experiences with Health PlansA Kaiser Family Foundation/Harvard School of Public Health survey found that more than six in ten privately insured American adults under age 65 give their health plans a grade of A or B, but nearly half report having some type of problem with their…

Designing a Marketplace that Works: Steps to Affordable Coverage

The Affordable Care Act enacted in March 2010 calls for the establishment of state health insurance exchanges — marketplaces through which individuals and small businesses can purchase affordable insurance. These exchanges must begin operation by January 1, 2014. This October 22 briefing, cosponsored by the Alliance for Health Reform and…

Health Coverage for the Unemployed

This policy brief outlines the challenges facing the unemployed as they seek to remain insured after losing jobs and employer-sponsored health coverage. In May 2011, 13.9 million people in the U.S. were unemployed. Of these, 6.2 million had been unemployed for six months or more and faced limited options to…

Update on Individual Health Insurance

This report provides information about the individual health insurance market using data from the largest vendor of this type of insurance, eHealthInsurance. The report includes who is buying individual insurance, what they are actually paying for the insurance, and buying patterns. It is the first in an up-coming series of…

Summary of Findings: Privatization of Public Hospitals

This Summary presents background, findings, and data from the Economic and Social Research Institute’s (ESRI) full report, Privatization of Public Hospitals. Section I provides background about public hospital conversions, including the role of public hospitals, reasons for conversion, the mechanisms of conversion and new ownership entities, and analysis of national…

Peering Into the Black Box of Insurance Rating

Recently, the New York Times reported that private health insurers continue to seek large premium increases despite seeing lower than expected use of medical care and booking record profits. The story highlights a significant problem for health policy: the lack of good, public information about how health insurers manage health…