Posts Tagged ‘health insurance’
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, December 28, 2012
GOP Governors Deny The Poor Health Care In Opposing Obamacare‘s Medicaid Expansion
December 28, 2012
Posted: 12/28/2012 8:44 am EST | Updated: 12/28/2012 12:18 pm EST
Texas Gov. Rick Perry, right, and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal in De Witt, Iowa, Tuesday, Dec. 20, 2011. Both Republican governors — along with those in Oklahoma, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, South Carolina, South Dakota and Maine — have rejected an expansion of Medicaid in their states. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)
RUSTON, La. — With no health insurance and not enough money for a doctor, Laura Johnson is long accustomed to treating her ailments with a self-written prescription: home remedies, prayer and denial.
Over decades, she made her living assisting elderly people in nursing homes in jobs that paid just above minimum wage and included no health benefits. So even as her feet swelled to such an extent that she could no longer stuff them into her shoes, and even as nausea, headaches and dizziness plagued her, she reached for the aspirin bottle or made do with a teaspoon of vinegar. She propped her feet up on pillows and hoped for relief.
“Before I got sick,” she said, “I hadn’t been to the doctor in 20 years.”
After she collapsed last year and landed in in a local emergency room, doctors diagnosed her with congestive heart failure, high blood pressure and hypothyroid. They ordered her not to work. She arranged a Social Security disability benefit, and she enrolled in Medicaid, the government-furnished insurance program for the poor. She used her Medicaid card to secure needed prescription medications. Her ailments stabilized.
But this year, the state determined that the $819 a month she draws in disability payments exceed the allowable limit. By the federal government’s reckoning, her $9,800 annual income made her officially poor. But under the standards set by Louisiana, she was too well off to receive Medicaid.
This is how Johnson, 57, finds herself back amid the roughly 49 million Americans who lack health insurance. This is why she must again reach into her pocket to secure her prescription drugs, a supply that runs about $200 a month. That sum is beyond her, so she has gone more than four months without taking her pills on a regular basis. Once again, her feet are swelling and her chest is filling with fluid. Once again, she is confronted with the realization that a lifetime of labor does not entitle her to see a doctor any more than it enables her to gain crucial medications.
“It just doesn’t seem right to me,” she said. “It just doesn’t seem fair.”
Johnson is precisely the sort of person who is supposed to Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home., - Read 'em and weep: The Daily News | Tagged: Bobby Jindal, health insurance, Laura Johnson, Louisiana, Medicaid, Obamacare, Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Republican Governors Association, South Carolina, United States | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, December 9, 2012
12/04/2012 @ 5:18PM
by Rick Ungar, Contributor
Writing from the left on politics and policy.
LAS VEGAS, NV – APRIL 01: Papa Johns Pizza Founder John Schnatter arrives at the 47th Annual Academy Of Country Music Awards held at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on April 1, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images)
It turns out that being a good corporate citizen is as important to selling pizzas as the thinness of the crust or the quality of the cheese.
If you don’t believe it, just ask Papa John CEO, John Schnatter.
As covered—and criticized—in this column in great detail, Mr. Schnatter decided to mix his politics with his pepperoni when suggesting that he would be cutting the work hours for Papa John employees in order to bring them below the 30 hour per week threshold that would require Schnatter to provide his employees with healthcare benefits.
It turns out, the pizza eating public did not approve.
Indeed, so serious was the reaction that Schnatter was forced to publish an op-ed piece where he sought to convince us that he never really intended to cut back worker hours but had simply been speculating on what he might do in response to the legislation.
According to YouGov BrandIndex, a leading marketing survey that measures brand perception in the marketplace (called “Buzz”), Papa John’s had good reason for concern as the pizza chain’s brand identity has plummeted from a high of 32 on election day, to a remarkably low score of 4 among adults who have eaten at causal dining restaurants during the past month.
Papa John is not alone in his anti-Obamacare misery.
Fast food server, Applebee’s, possessed a healthy Buzz score of 35 before Zane Terkel, CEO of one of the company’s largest franchisees, appeared on television to Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Business... None of yours, - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home. | Tagged: Applebee, bad, Darden Restaurants, Fox Business Network, good, health, health insurance, healthcare, insurance, John Schnatter, left, LongHorn Steakhouse, news, Obamacare, Papa John, Papa John's Pizza, policy, politics, reform, right, wrong, YouGov | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, October 3, 2012
At the time of publication of this report – September 2011 – the complete data was not in. However, initial results indicated that cost containment was well under way.
The news is good!
ObamaCare is WORKING!
However, much additional work remains to be done.
Latest survey finds health benefit cost growth for 2012 likely to be the lowest in 15 years
United States , New York
Publication date: 21 September 2011
Early responses from a Mercer survey still in the field suggest that the average growth in health benefit cost will slow to 5.4% in 2012, the smallest increase since 1997. Still, cost growth remains well above both general inflation and growth in workers’ earnings (see Fig. 1).
While this increase reflects cost-cutting changes employers will make to their current health benefit programs, such as raising deductibles or moving employees into lower-cost health plans, the preliminary survey findings released today by Mercer suggest that the underlying trend has slowed as well. Asked how much cost would rise if they made no changes to their current plans, employers reported an average increase of 7.1%. Over the past five years, this underlying health benefit cost trend has been running at about 9%.
The slower trend is good news for workers, because an employer’s first line of defense against a high initial renewal rate typically is to change plan provisions so that employees pay more out of pocket for health care. If the underlying trend is lower to begin with, employers will be likely to shift less cost. For the past several years, employers have reduced their initial renewal rate by about 3 percentage points on average; in 2012, they are planning to reduce it by about 2 points (Fig. 2).
These results are based on Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Even MORE Uncategorized!, - Read 'em and weep: The Daily News, - Do you feel like we do, Dr. Who? | Tagged: health, healthcare, insurance, health care, Democrats, business, United States, employment, health insurance, Barack Obama, Obamacare, POTUS, entrepreneur, enterprise, Health maintenance organization, Preferred provider organization, care, Mercer, Consumer-driven health care, Marsh & McLennan Companies, Health Reimbursement Account, health insurance reform, costs, responsibiity, Health savings account | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, September 16, 2012
Can anyone say “Banksters”?
Highlights From Census Report on Income, Poverty and Health Insurance
September 12, 2012, 11:00 AM, By Ben Casselman
The Census Bureau today released its annual report on income, poverty and health insurance, the most detailed look at Americans’ household income. A few early takeaways:
Real income fell
Inequality rose. Income inequality, as measured by the Gini index, rose 1.6% in 2011 from 2010, the first annual increase since 1993. Other measures of inequality also increased. The top 5% of earners—those making $186,000 or more—received 22.3% of all income in 2011, up from 21.3% in 2010.
Urban residents took the biggest hit to income. Households in principal cities saw their inflation-adjusted income decline by 3.7% in 2011, versus a 2.2% decline for those living in metropolitan areas (including both cities and suburbs). Incomes for those living outside of metropolitan areas were broadly flat. But Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Read 'em and weep: The Daily News | Tagged: insurance, United States, health insurance, Economic inequality, Household income in the United States, United States Census Bureau, Gini coefficient, Poverty threshold | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, August 29, 2012
The truth speaks for itself.—
Is Obamacare a Government Takeover of Medicine?
Carolyn McClanahan, Contributor
Physician/Financial Planner. I discuss all things money and medicine.
8/28/2012 @ 10:32PM
The purpose of this blog is to educate non-policy wonks on the content of the Affordable Care Act, discuss the practical logistics of how the law will be implemented, and share my perspective on potential “good” and “bad” of the law. The law is far from perfect, but it is the most significant attempt our country has ever made at reforming our costly and inefficient health care system. In case you are a reader who thinks the entire law is “bad,” I implore you to learn about the ten sections of the law in this previous post.
In addition to speaking gigs, I also do “talk radio” about once a month. The questions I’m asked give some indication of where education on the ACA is lacking. One refrain I’ve heard over and over is that Obamacare is a “government takeover” of medicine. This post explores that concept.
“Government takeover” fears seem to take on several different variations.
• Medicine will be a government run entity – doctors will be employed by the government and care will be paid for by the government.
• All of the doctors will be employed by the government, but insurance companies will still exist.
• The government will dictate what doctors can and cannot do.
• The government will make it so onerous to practice medicine that everyone will quit.
• If the government has one iota of involvement in any form, it is a government takeover.
So what really happens with the Affordable Care Act? Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Did they REALLY say that?, - Do you feel like we do, Dr. Who?, - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home. | Tagged: ACA, Affordable Care Act, health, health care, health insurance, healthcare, insurance, Medicaid, Medicare, Obamacare, Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, PPACA, United States, Wikipedia | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, June 24, 2012
Does that surprise anyone?
People don’t like being told what to do.
They naturally buck against any system – no matter who or what – that tells them what to do, or how to do it. And yet, we know that civil society abides by rules and regulation which govern every aspect of our lives from the cradle to the grave. We must abide by rules as we grow. In fact, we’re introduced to regulation and rules by our parents who punish us when we disobey them. To hear “NO! Don’t do this, do that this way,” are all common in childhood.
But hopefully, we outgrow childhood and transition through that elongated period of pseudo-adulthood called the “teenage years,” and successfully become responsible adults, and abide by laws, rules, regulations galore… ranging from civic laws, to employer policy, procedure and more. And then, we make more laws, rules, regulations, policy and procedures. It’s a never-ending cycle.
The gist of all, is that by following rules and regulations, we demonstrate personal responsibility, and accountability to others. And rarely is that ever an impediment to progress, or a harm to our neighbor.
So naturally, when we hear or see of someone having a knee-jerk reaction to anything, we can almost immediately discount most – if not all – of what they say, simply because of their radical overreaction. And so it is with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), which is often misnomered as “ObamaCare.”
The PPACA actually contains more policy and regulation of Big Health Insurance companies‘ egregious practices than it does anything else.
• It is now illegal for Health Insurance Companies (HICs) to deny coverage based upon “pre-existing conditions” for children and adults.
• It is now illegal for HICs to charge women more for health insurance than they do men.
• It is now illegal for HICs to refuse payment for services rendered by physicians, hospitals or pharmacies simply because the insured person inadvertently forgot to dot an “i” or cross a “t” on an application.
• It is now illegal for HICs to use the majority of healthcare insurance premiums to pay for overhead expenses including executive compensation, stockholder payout, overhead office expenses, advertising, or any other expense UNRELATED to the delivery of healthcare. Now, they must use 80% of premiums to pay for healthcare.
• It is now illegal to deny family coverage for a child simply once they reached aged 18. HICs are now required to continue coverage to children up to age 26 if they are still enrolled in school.
Page 6 from “Assuring Affordable Healthcare for All Americans,” by Stuart M. Butler, Ph.D., The Heritage Foundation, 1989, ISSN 0272-1155
Most Americans oppose health law but like provisions
(Reuters) – Most Americans oppose President Barack Obama’s healthcare reform even though they strongly support most of its provisions, a Reuters/Ipsos poll showed on Sunday, with the Supreme Court set to rule within days on whether the law should stand.
Fifty-six percent of people are Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Do you feel like we do, Dr. Who?, - Lost In Space: TOTALLY Discombobulated, - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home. | Tagged: Africa, American Apparel, American Healthcare Reform, Barack Obama, Civil society, Democratic Party, Genetically modified food, genetically modified organism, George W. Bush, Green Revolution, health, Health care reform, health insurance, healthcare, Heritage Foundation, hypocrisy, insurance, Jeremiah Wright, Kaiser Family Foundation, law, Los Angeles Times, Mitt Romney, money, Monsanto, Obama, Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, reform, Republican, Republicans, Roundup, sex, Supreme Court, Trinity United Church of Christ, United States, United States Supreme Court | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, June 22, 2012
A HUGE aspect of “ObamaCare” deals with regulating Health Insurance companies, and one aspect of that business regulation REQUIRES them to use 80% of the premiums for Health Insurance on… HEALTH! Not overhead expenses, not executive compensation, not stockholder payout, not office expenses, not advertising… but HEALTH!
What a novel idea, eh?
As a result, folks are now discovering just how much they’ve been screwed over by Insurance companies.
Remember… those folks DO NOT LOVE YOU.
They LOVE MONEY, and they want yours.
So, they play to your emotions by showing kitty cats, puppy dogs, babies, children, grandma and happy folks as seen through rose-colored glasses & soft-focus filters.
And then, you fall for their seductive pictures.
Once they have their meat-hooks in your wallet, you’re a goner.
Pure & simple.
U.S. health insurers to pay $1.1 billion in rebates: HHS
By David Morgan
WASHINGTON | Thu Jun 21, 2012 3:26pm EDT
(Reuters) – U.S. health insurance companies are due to pay out $1.1 billion in rebates to employers and individuals this summer, under a new industry regulation imposed by President Barack Obama’s health care law, the administration said on Thursday.
But whether the rebates actually reach those recipients depends on if the U.S. Supreme Court strikes down the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act in a ruling expected by the end of next week, experts said.
Twenty-six U.S. states have asked the high court to Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home., - Read 'em and weep: The Daily News | Tagged: $1.1 billion, Affordable Care Act, Barack Obama, health care, health insurance, insurance, Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Supreme Court of the United States, United States Department of Health and Human Services | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, May 28, 2012
Regular readers will recall the entry entitled “Q: Why do hospitals charge $75 for aspirin? A: Because they can.,” which was posted Wednesday, May 2, 2012.
In another venue, I had posted the following remark in response to the exorbitant healthcare costs, “It’s a simple concept, really. Anytime anyone gets in between you & who you’re buying from, it costs more. Insurance does that.”
And it’s true.
It’s not trite.
Let’s consider this example: You’re at the grocery store in the check-out line, about to pay for your groceries which have already been bagged and placed in your shopping cart. When the clerk announces the total, you have some strange feeling because the total is about ten times as much as you imagined.
When you double check the price of milk you find the sticker says $2.50/gallon, but your clerk rang up $25. You double check the price of frozen spinach. The sticker price says $1.37, but the clerk rang up $13.70. The chocolate was $4.50, but the clerk rang up $45.00. And the lean ground beef, instead of the posted $2.60/lb, the 5lb chub was… $130.00.
Talk about sticker shock!
You are aghast at the price, and in frustrated terms exclaim that “there is obviously some gross mistake!” – to which the clerk replies, “Let me check with your Food Insurance Agent,” picks up a phone beside the register, presses one button, and whispers into the receiver.
Suddenly, out of a door leading to an inside office, Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Do you feel like we do, Dr. Who?, - Read 'em and weep: The Daily News | Tagged: business, California, cost, Costco, Deloitte Center for Health Solutions, Discounts and allowances, Financial Services, grocery store, Hawaii, health, health care, health insurance, healthinsurance, insurance, Insurance policy, Los Angeles, Los Angeles Times, medical bills, Patient Protection & Affordable Care Act, Paul Keckley, Times, United States, Vehicle insurance, X-ray computed tomography | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, May 16, 2012
A long-term trend in medicine in the United States has been that medical school students continue to abandon Family Care and Rural Practice.
The corollary trend among Advance Practice Nurses & Nurse Practitioners – many whom must also pass National Board Certifications in their area of practice – has been to fill the void formed in the delivery of healthcare by physician abandonment. Typically, the argument given for such abandonment is pecuniary. That is, by the time the medical student graduates from medical school & residency to assume full and independent practice, their debt load is not merely burdensome or impractical, but almost wholly impossible to repay.
More recently, however, medical schools and public health authorities have acknowledged the error of allowing that deterioration and abandonment to occur, and have begun to promote Primary & Family Care among medical schools and their students. Such strategies include not merely the promotion of community and the advantages of rural independent practice, but include full-ride scholarships while in medical school.
Nurse practitioners look to fill gap with expected spike in demand for health services
President Obama’s health-care law is expected to expand health insurance to 32 million Americans over the next decade. Health policy experts anticipate that Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in - Did they REALLY say that?, - Do you feel like we do, Dr. Who?, - My Hometown is the sweetest place I know | Tagged: American Association of Neuropathologists, American Medical Association, Barack Obama, CRNA, Family medicine, Family Nurse Practitioner, FNP, health, health care, health insurance, Jensen, medicine, National Prescribing Service, NP, Nurse Practitioner, Nursing, Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, RN, United States | Leave a Comment »