Mississippi’s Medicaid work requirement would cause 20,000 parents to lose coverage

April 10, 2018, The SunHerald, Tony Pugh- An estimated 20,000 poor parents in Mississippi would lose health coverage over five years under a state proposal to require Medicaid recipients to work for their benefits, researchers at Georgetown University reported Tuesday. Childless adults aren’t eligible for coverage under Medicaid in Mississippi, where children, seniors, low-income parents and the blind and disabled make up the bulk of program recipients. Mississippi has asked the Trump administration for permission to require at least 20 hours per week of work or approved work activities in order to retain coverage under Medicaid, the state/federal health plan for low-income and disabled Americans.

Trump administration rewrites ACA insurance rules to give more power to states

April 9, 2018, The Washington Post, Amy Goldstein- The Trump administration on Monday rewrote rules for health plans sold through Affordable Care Act marketplaces, tilting control over insurance standards from the federal government to states and handing Americans new ways to avoid penalties for failing to carry coverage. The rules add two broad exemptions from the ACA’s requirement that most consumers be insured. The change offers escape hatches that will be retroactive two years, even before a recent tax law ends the penalties completely starting in 2019. People living in areas where only one insurer is selling plans in the marketplace now can qualify for a “hardship exemption.” So can people who oppose abortion and live in places where the only available plan covers abortion services. Federal health officials and private researchers have shown that about half of U.S. counties have only one ACA insurer this year.

Health Insurers Tout Strides In Preventive Care Amid Attacks On Medicaid

April 9, 2018, Forbes, Bruce Japsen- The health insurance industry Monday launched a detailed report insurers say shows successes health plans are making to increase preventive care and access to treatments after low income Americans are enrolled in a Medicaid health plan. The study is a counter to criticism this year conservative groups and Republicans have directed toward Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program, which provide health coverage to more than 74 million Americans. Of those, more than 52 million Americans are enrolled in private Medicaid health plans . Key findings of the report from America’s Health Insurance Plans indicate adults enrolled in Medicaid managed care plans were “almost five times more likely, and children were four times more likely, to have a usual source of care than people with no health coverage.”

Medicaid Enrollees Have Significantly Better Access to Health Care Compared to Uninsured, According

April 9, 2018, AHIP, Cathryn Donaldson- Americans enrolled in Medicaid have far better access to health care and preventive services than those without coverage, according to new research released today by America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP). The in-depth study adds to the clear and consistent evidence that having health insurance coverage in general, and Medicaid specifically, provides significant value and protection for Americans

Insurance experts watching for new rules

April 7, 2018, Daily Journal, Michaela Gibson Morris- Insurance experts are watching Washington to see how new rules on health insurance will affect premiums and plans available to consumers on and off the exchanges. “The prognosis is that the (Affordable Care Act) market is not collapsing, but it’s not a bed of roses,” said Sabrina Corlette, a research professor at Georgetown University’s Health Policy Institute during a briefing organized by the Commonwealth Fund, a nonprofit, non-partisan health care foundation. The people eligible for subsidies will continue to be insulated from premium increases, but those who make too much to qualify will continue to have a hard time finding affordable individual policies on or off the market.

Timeline: Despite GOP’s Failure To Repeal Obamacare, The ACA Has Changed

April 5, 2018, Kaiser Health News, Julie Rovner- A Congress in 2017 failed to “repeal and replace” the Affordable Care Act. But the health law has been changed in many other ways over the past year and a half. Some changes were made by Congress, some by President Donald Trump and his administration and some by state officials. Here is a timeline of the most consequential events that have shaped the health law.