Affordable Care Act Guide » Updates

GOP House targets health care law; 67 Dems join in

Posted on January 15, 2014 at 11:13 am

DONNA CASSATA, Associated Press   WASHINGTON (AP) — The Republican-led House voted overwhelmingly Friday to bolt new security requirements onto President Barack Obama’s health care law, with 67 Democrats breaking ranks to join with the GOP. It was the first skirmish of what is certain to be a long and contentious election-year fight. The vote was 291-122 with Republicans relentlessly focusing on “Obamacare,” convinced that Americans’ unease with the troubled

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Updates » Older Stories

  • Obama’s tarnished health care law at a crossroads

    Posted on January 2, 2014 at 11:08 am

    RICARDO ALONSO-ZALDIVAR, Associated Press   WASHINGTON (AP) — All things good, bad and unpredictable converge with the new year for President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul as the law’s major benefits take effect, along with an unpopular insurance mandate and a risk of more nerve-wracking disruptions to coverage. The changes bring big improvements for some, including Howard Kraft of Lincolnton, N.C. A painful spinal problem left him unable to work

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  • Insurers allow more time to pay under health law

    Posted on December 18, 2013 at 3:17 pm

    RICARDO ALONSO-ZALDIVAR, Associated Press  WASHINGTON (AP) — Consumers anxious over tight insurance deadlines and lingering computer problems during the holidays will get extra time to pay their premiums under President Barack Obama’s health care law, insurers announced Wednesday. The board of the industry’s biggest trade group — America’s Health Insurance Plans — said consumers who select a plan by Dec. 23 will now have until Jan. 10 to pay their

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  • Health website to remain a work in progress

    Posted on November 20, 2013 at 1:08 pm

    Kathleen Sebelius

    KELLI KENNEDY, Associated Press MIAMI (AP) — The HealthCare.gov website will still be a work in progress beyond the end of the month, Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said Tuesday, appearing to soften a promise that the site will be working by then for the vast majority of users. “The 30th of November is not a magic go, no go date. It is a work of constant improvement. We have

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  • Policy cancellations: Obama will allow old plans

    Posted on November 14, 2013 at 4:07 pm

    Barack Obama

    DAVID ESPO, Associated Press JULIE PACE, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — Bowing to pressure, President Barack Obama on Thursday announced changes to his health care law to give insurance companies the option to keep offering consumers plans that would otherwise be canceled. The administrative changes are good for just one year, though senior administration officials said they could be extended if problems with the law persist. Obama announced the changes

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  • Obama apologizes to people losing health coverage

    Posted on November 8, 2013 at 3:06 pm

    Barack Obama

    JULIE PACE, AP White House Correspondent WASHINGTON (AP) — Bowing to intense criticism, President Barack Obama apologized to Americans who are losing health insurance plans he had repeatedly said they could keep and pledged to find fixes that might allow people to keep their coverage. “I am sorry that they are finding themselves in this situation based on assurances they got from me,” he said in an interview Thursday with

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  • Critics: Some unions could get break from fees

    Posted on November 7, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    SAM HANANEL, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — Critics of the new health care law are claiming some labor unions could get a break from fees imposed on everyone covered by health insurance. The Obama administration’s plan to exempt “certain self-insured, self-administered plans” from paying fees in 2015 and 2016 is not sitting well with Republicans, who say the move smacks of favoritism for a powerful White House ally. Labor officials

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  • Sebelius takes GOP criticism over “Obamacare”

    Posted on November 7, 2013 at 4:11 pm

    DAVID ESPO, AP Special Correspondent WASHINGTON (AP) — Republicans blistered Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius on Wednesday over the nation’s controversial health care law, bluntly challenging her honesty, pushing for her resignation and demanding unsuccessfully she concede that President Barack Obama deliberately misled the public about his signature domestic program. “We’re not in it to just give you a rough time. We’re in it to try and hopefully

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  • White House sidesteps on “Obamacare” change

    Posted on November 7, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    Barack Obama

    DAVID ESPO, AP Special Correspondent WASHINGTON (AP) — Under growing pressure, the administration refused repeatedly to state a position Tuesday on legislation formalizing President Barack Obama’s oft-stated promise that people who like their existing coverage should be allowed to keep it under the new health care law. Senate Democrats spoke dismissively of the proposals, signaling they have no intention of permitting a vote on the issue that marks the latest

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  • Health website’s security prompts worries

    Posted on November 6, 2013 at 11:50 am

    RICARDO ALONSO-ZALDIVAR, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — Obama administration officials are facing mounting questions about whether they cut corners on security testing while rushing to meet a self-imposed deadline to launch online health insurance markets. Documents show that the part of HealthCare.gov that consumers interact with directly received only a temporary six-month security certification because it had not been fully tested before Oct. 1, when the website went live. It’s

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  • Obama to cite Mass. health care law’s slow start

    Posted on October 30, 2013 at 3:08 pm

    NEDRA PICKLER, Associated Press   BOSTON (AP) — President Barack Obama is citing the Massachusetts health care system’s slow start to keep expectations low for early sign-ups for his own overhaul. And he’s pointing to the bipartisan effort to get the program launched in Massachusetts to encourage his opponents to stop rooting for his law’s failure. The president planned to speak about the embattled law Wednesday from Boston’s historic Faneuil

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  • Obama calls trusted fixer to help health care site

    Posted on October 23, 2013 at 10:32 am

    Computer Doctor

    DARLENE SUPERVILLE, Associated Press   WASHINGTON (AP) — When a federal program that promised cash rebates to people who traded in their clunkers for more fuel-efficient vehicles was overrun by demand, President Barack Obama assigned Jeffrey Zients, his deputy budget director, to help eliminate the backlog. When the same thing happened with sign-ups for an updated version of the GI Bill, one designed to help the 9/11 generation of veterans

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  • Obamacare a success so far? It’s hard to say

    Posted on October 16, 2013 at 10:27 am

    psd_thumbs_button_s

    PATRICK CONDON, Associated Press ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — After more than a week in action, is a key feature of President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul a success or a bust? Judging by the dearth of data, it’s virtually impossible to say. The federal government has released no comprehensive data on how many people have enrolled for health insurance using federally run exchanges, the online marketplaces being used in

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  • Health law glitches: fatal or fleeting?

    Posted on October 9, 2013 at 11:02 am

    Website Picture

    RICARDO ALONSO-ZALDIVAR, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — The glitch-ridden rollout of President Barack Obama’s health care law has opponents crowing: “Told you so!” and insisting it should be paused, if not scrapped. But others, including insurance companies, say there’s still enough time to fix the online enrollment system before uninsured Americans start getting coverage on Jan. 1. After emergency repairs over the weekend, consumers in different parts of the country

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  • Obamacare marketplaces open despite technical glitches, government shutdown

    Posted on October 2, 2013 at 12:15 pm

    healthcare_exchange_error

    Jay Hancock,  Kaiser Health News Phil Galewitz,  Kaiser Health News Ankita Rao,  Kaiser Health News Online marketplaces at the heart of the health law opened for business Tuesday, often haltingly, as Web-based insurance portals were swamped with consumers who were frequently unable to sign up. The Obama administration declared the launch a success even as it declined to furnish short-term enrollment numbers in the federally run marketplace for 36 states

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  • Haves and have-nots as health care markets open

    Posted on September 30, 2013 at 10:36 am

    RICARDO ALONSO-ZALDIVAR, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — Having health insurance used to hinge on where you worked and what your medical history said. Soon that won’t matter, with open-access markets for subsidized coverage coming Oct. 1 under President Barack Obama’s overhaul. But there’s a new wild card, something that didn’t seem so critical when Congress passed the Affordable Care Act back in 2010: where you live. Entrenched political divisions over

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  • Newly insured to deepen primary care doctor gap

    Posted on September 30, 2013 at 10:32 am

    Stephanie Place, Maria Cazho

    ANN SANNER, Associated Press COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Getting face time with the family doctor could soon become even harder. A shortage of primary care physicians in some parts of the country is expected to worsen as millions of newly insured Americans gain coverage under the federal health care law next year. Doctors could face a backlog, and patients could find it difficult to get quick appointments. Attempts to address

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  • Exchanges create confusion for Medicare recipients

    Posted on September 30, 2013 at 10:26 am

    Ida Gall, Sophia Forbes

    KELLI KENNEDY, Associated Press MIAMI (AP) — Dear seniors, your Medicare benefits aren’t changing under the Affordable Care Act. That’s the message federal health officials are trying to get out to some older consumers confused by overlapping enrollment periods for Medicare and so-called “Obamacare.” Medicare beneficiaries don’t have to do anything differently and will continue to go to Medicare.gov to sign up for plans. But advocates say many have been

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  • ABCs of Obamacare: a glossary for consumers

    Posted on September 30, 2013 at 10:23 am

    The Associated Press- Major new laws come with their own jargon, and President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul is no exception. With the first open enrollment season kicking off for the uninsured, here are some terms consumers might want to get familiar with:   Affordable Care Act — The most common formal name for the health care law. Its full title is the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Opponents

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  • Applying for health insurance? Homework involved

    Posted on September 30, 2013 at 10:20 am

    Health Overhaul Applying For Coverage

    RICARDO ALONSO-ZALDIVAR, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — Getting covered through President Barack Obama’s health care law might feel like a combination of doing your taxes and making a big purchase that requires research. You’ll need accurate income information for your household, plus some understanding of how health insurance works, so you can get the financial assistance you qualify for and pick a health plan that’s right for your needs. The

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  • An overview of some of the key changes to health care services under the Affordable Care Act

    Posted on September 30, 2013 at 10:17 am

    Barack Obama, John Dingell, Marcela Owens

    The Associated Press ESSENTIAL HEALTH BENEFITS Under the law, health insurers must cover 10 essential benefits. This will make health plans more costly, but also more comprehensive. Starting next year, the rules will apply to all plans offered to individuals or through the small-group market to employers with 50 or fewer workers. The essential-benefits requirement does not apply to plans offered by larger employers, which typically offer most of these,

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