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Health Care

01/19/2018

New HHS Division Aims to Protect Religious Rights of Healthcare Workers

Healthcare workers who object to performing medical services based on religious or moral beliefs will now find some recourse for refusing service under the Trump administration. On Thursday, January 18, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced that it would be creating a new division under its Office for Civil Rights called the Division of Conscience and Religious ... Read Full Article ›

01/19/2018

Special Enrollment for Recent Natural Disasters – Individual Marketplace & Medicare Affected

On Wednesday, January 17, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) clarified its position on a special enrollment period created for victims of the 2017 hurricane season in the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. The CMS announced in September that people in hurricane-impacted areas would be given a special enrollment period (SEP) until December 31, 2017 to sign ... Read Full Article ›

01/19/2018

America’s Top Boss is Now Healthcare

Healthcare now employs more Americans than any other business sector. Throughout the 20th century, the top employers in the U.S. were consistently in retail and manufacturing sectors. While it’s unclear what this increase in the number of healthcare workers will mean for individual patients, the trend doesn’t seem to be in danger of reversing any time soon. How It Happened ... Read Full Article ›

10/19/2017

Special Enrollment Period Announced for Hurricane Impacted Areas

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced in late September that if you were impacted by Hurricanes Harvey, Irma or Maria, you will receive an extension to make changes to your health insurance if you purchased it through the federal health insurance exchange. Medicare recipients were also given an extension to make changes to their plans. Federal Exchange ... Read Full Article ›

09/22/2017

The Graham-Cassidy Bill (GCHJ) – Yay or Nay?

On September 13, four Republican senators released a last-ditch healthcare reform proposal that’s been taking conservative Congress members by storm. The effort, dubbed the “GCHJ bill” after its sponsors – Lindsey Graham (SC), Bill Cassidy (LA), Dean Heller (NV) and Ron Johnson (WI) – will face significant challenges as it races its way through the Senate. That’s because the upper ... Read Full Article ›

09/22/2017

What’s in the New GCHJ Bill?

The Graham-Cassidy-Heller-Johnson ( GCHJ ) healthcare bill is the latest Republican effort to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA or Obamacare). On September 20, President Donald Trump endorsed the bill, saying it was the best option for replacing the ACA. What is the GCHJ Bill? The GCHJ plan proposes block grants given to states in lieu of the ... Read Full Article ›

09/22/2017

Senate Hearing on Healthcare

In a press release issued on August 22, 2017, Senators Lamar Alexander of Tennessee and Patty Murray of Washington announced that the Committee on Health, Education, Labor & Pensions (HELP) would hold hearings in September on how to stabilize the health insurance market for the 2018 enrollment season. Alexander and Murray are ranking members of the committee, and enrollment for ... Read Full Article ›

09/07/2017

Expected Changes For Open Enrollment In 2018

Over the past few months as the current members of Congress attempted to topple the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Americans wondered what the future of healthcare would be. As it stands now, the ACA remains in place as the Senate was unable to pass legislation that would have completely overhauled the healthcare law. This has placed healthcare on the back ... Read Full Article ›

03/18/2017

Final 2017 Enrollment Tally from the CMS – Down 4 Percent from 2016

As of the final enrollment tally released by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services on March 15, about 12.2 million people had enrolled in a health insurance plan using Obamacare marketplaces this year. The final tally includes enrollment data from federal and state exchanges, and it represents a slight drop over the final figure for 2016. Then, enrollment topped ... Read Full Article ›

01/31/2017

Healthcare Might Be Changing – But You Still Need Coverage

Whether you already have health insurance or not, you’re probably wondering if you still need coverage now that Trump has proposed repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act (ACA). What you do in 2017 will affect what happens to your chances of continuing coverage going into 2018 and beyond. Marketplace open enrollment ends for 2017 on January 31, except for ... Read Full Article ›

11/09/2016

Can Trump Repeal Obamacare

One of the big questions remaining after the Presidential Election on November 8th is what will happen to Obamacare. The 2017 Open Enrollment Period was kicked off on November 1st and many are wondering, after hearing the results of the election, whether they should still bother getting health insurance if Trump intends on repealing and replacing Obamacare once he reaches ... Read Full Article ›

11/09/2016

Should I Still Enroll in Health Insurance?

Enroll The 2016 Presidential Election concluded on November 8th with a stunning victory for Donald Trump. One of the platforms Trump ran on was that he would repeal and replace Obamacare. Right now, Americans are at the beginning of the 2017 Open Enrollment Period under Obamacare. Under Obamacare, every American must have health insurance or else they will face a ... Read Full Article ›

09/06/2016

CMS Proposes New Standards to Strengthen the Marketplace for 2018

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued the proposed annual Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters for 2018, intended to strengthen the Health Insurance Marketplace. CMS is officially issuing this rule as of September 6, 2016, addressing changes that have been underway in the last six months. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) law continues to evolve, and ... Read Full Article ›

08/16/2016

Aetna Also Dropping Out of Some Markets

Consumers who buy health insurance through the Obamacare marketplaces will face an even greater shortage in the number of plans available for 2017. Aetna, the country's third-largest health insurer, announced on Monday that it would be withdrawing individual major medical plans from the exchanges in 11 out of the 15 states where it currently does business. Only plans in Delaware, ... Read Full Article ›

04/22/2016

Obamacare plans increase, as employer-sponsored coverage drops

As the latest reports show, the most recent Open Enrollment Period (OEP), which ended on Jan. 31, 2016, saw 12.7 million Americans sign up for health insurance policies under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). This latest OEP represents an increase of one million people (8.5 percent more) over the previous year. Since the healthcare law's passage on Jan. 1, 2014, ... Read Full Article ›

04/22/2016

Employer coverage remains strong, even as ACA plans provide coverage

The Jan 1st 2014, launch of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) provided millions of previously uninsured Americans with vital healthcare coverage. But countless heated arguments have been directed at the law, both for and against. One of the most volatile matters was the issue of employer-sponsored policies, by far, the biggest source for the nations' health insurance. The Congressional Budget ... Read Full Article ›

04/22/2016

CMS announces confirmation changes to SEP process

Over the past three years, Americans have taken full advantage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA)'s annual Open Enrollment Period (OEP). This is the official window in which people are able to select and purchase ACA-compliant health insurance plans. By all accounts, the OEPs are successful, with the final estimates for the 2016 OEP showing that 12.7 million Americans signed ... Read Full Article ›

01/11/2016

The New Year marks a new Obamacare enrollment milestone

The start of 2016 has signaled another achievement for the Affordable Care Act (ACA). As of Dec. 31, 2015, more than 8.5 million Americans have purchased health coverage during this latest 2016 Open Enrollment Period (OEP). As 6 million of these were policy renewals, this supports the Obama administration’s estimates of as many as 14.7 million ACA enrollees by the ... Read Full Article ›

01/11/2016

Florida tops the nation in Obamacare enrollment

In 2015, Florida achieved an impressive milestone, as the state's population reached 20.27 million. The Sunshine State now ranks as the third most-populous, trailing only California and Texas. Additionally, for the first time in a decade, Florida gained more people than California; 365,703, or more than 1,000 residents a day. This population growth illustrates the state's appeal, whether for employment, ... Read Full Article ›

12/10/2015

If you've missed the ACA's enrollment deadline, SEPs may hold the answer

The 2016 Open Enrollment Period (OEP) began on Nov. 1, 2015, and runs through Jan. 31, 2016. Come February, those Americans who have not enrolled in an approved health insurance plan, whether through the Federal Marketplace or a private company, may face an IRS-imposed tax penalty. Fortunately, the Obama Administration has made provisions, in the form of a Special Enrollment ... Read Full Article ›

12/10/2015

New and existing 2016 ACA enrollment rates up in latest reports

With the Affordable Care Act's (ACA's) third Open Enrollment Period well underway, recent reports suggest another successful sign-up period. As of Nov. 25, the OEP's third week, an estimated 1.6 million Americans have enrolled coverage through HealthCare.gov. And more promising news is that about one-third (500,000) of these enrollees were new customers. These results are an indication that the 2016 ... Read Full Article ›

11/16/2015

Open Enrollment 2015 - Tips For Obamacare Plans

Ways To Improve Your 2015 / 2016 Health Insurance Open Enrollment Experience Whether your state relies on the federal facilitated Marketplace or its own exchange, you will soon have to make decisions about insurance coverage. The 2016 annual Open Enrollment Period (OEP) runs from Nov. 1, 2015, through Jan. 31, 2016. Coverage begins on Jan. 1, 2016, if you enroll ... Read Full Article ›

07/12/2014

CA Passes Law That Exempts Businesses from Mandates Until 2016

California Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill on July 7, 2014 that excused small businesses in California from complying with the employer mandate requirements under the Affordable Care Act for another year, until 2016. Under the original version of the Affordable Care Act, President Obama wanted the employer mandates to take effect in 2014. That deadline was pushed back until ... Read Full Article ›

07/11/2014

Hobby Lobby Case Isn't the Last Coming Down the Pike

Hobby Lobby VS. Obamacare On June 30, 2014, the Supreme Court of the United States returned a verdict in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. stating that for-profit corporations like Hobby Lobby are not required to pay for and provide contraception through the insurance policies that they fund for their employees because it violates the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. The ... Read Full Article ›

03/31/2014

How Windfall Earnings Can Spoil Your Obamacare Subsidy

Question: I expect $45,000 in self-employed income for my family of four this year, qualifying me for substantial government subsidies through the Affordable Care Act exchange. What happens if my actual earnings are just as expected until Dec. 31, 2014, when I realize an involuntary capital gain because a company that I own a stake in gets bought out by ... Read Full Article ›

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