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Pulling It Together: What Conservatives Won In Health Reform (And Don’t Seem to Know It)

Conservatives obviously don’t like what they call “Obamacare” because they think it expands the role of government too much and spends too much money.  But ironically, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) actually promotes — though not explicitly — something that has been a fundamental objective of conservatives in health care…

Pulling It Together: Predictions

I usually don’t make predictions, unless they are backed up by the kind of statistical modeling we often produce.  But here are three predictions I am confident about that form the basis of this latest column. GROUP HEALTH INSURANCE PREMIUMS WILL CONTINUE TO RISE AT HISTORICALLY MODERATE LEVELS, AT LEAST…

Establishing Health Insurance Marketplaces: An Overview of State Efforts

Figure 1: State Decisions for Creating Health Insurance Marketplaces State-based health insurance marketplaces, or exchanges, are a key component of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and the places where individuals and small businesses will be able to shop for coverage. States can build a fully state-based…

A Guide to the Supreme Court’s Review of the 2010 Health Care Reform Law

With the Supreme Court preparing to hear oral arguments about challenges to the 2010 Affordable Care Act in March 2012, this Kaiser Family Foundation brief serves as a primer on the pending case, which challenges the constitutionality both of the law’s individual mandate that requires most Americans to obtain health…

Determining Income for Adults Applying for Medicaid and Exchange Coverage Subsidies: How Income Measured With a Prior Tax Return Compares to Current Income at Enrollment

A major goal of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) is to significantly expand coverage and reduce the number of uninsured. Beginning in 2014, the ACA will establish a new continuum of coverage that will provide assistance to individuals with incomes up to 400% of poverty through a…

The Health Reform Law’s Medicaid Expansion: A Guide to the Supreme Court Arguments

One significant element of the pending U.S. Supreme Court case challenging the Affordable Care Act is the constitutionality of the law’s Medicaid expansion. This provision of the law requires states that choose to participate in the Medicaid program to cover nearly all adults under age 65 with household incomes at…

The Part D Experience: What are the Lessons for Broader Medicare Reform?

Launched in 2006, Medicare added a prescription drug benefit that relies entirely on private plans, while, for other benefits, beneficiaries have a choice between private health plans and traditional fee-for-service Medicare. As policymakers consider changes to Medicare that would give an even greater role to private health plans in caring…

A Guide to the Supreme Court’s Affordable Care Act Decision

This policy brief describes the Supreme Court’s decision on the Affordable Care Act and looks ahead to the implementation of health reform now that questions about the constitutionality of the law have been resolved. Brief (.pdf)

An Employer Health Benefits Balance Sheet

There seems to be growing interest in the question of how many employers will keep offering coverage to their full-time employees once the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is fully implemented in 2014, or instead will choose to stop offering coverage and pay a penalty. While there is some good analysis…

Who Will be the H&R Block and TurboTax for Health Insurance?

There’s been quite a bit of focus lately insofar as these issues go, anyway on health insurance agents and brokers (sometimes known in the industry as “producers”). They are pushing legislation that has been introduced in Congress and is now being studied by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners that…