Health and Human Services (HHS)

11:20am

Tue May 20, 2014
Health Insurance

Colorado’s Plan To Cut Ski-Town Health Premiums Gets Approval

Residents of rural and mountain resort towns may get some relief from high insurance premiums
Elise Thatcher Aspen Public Radio

The U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services has approved Colorado's plan to consolidate several rating areas to reduce health insurance premiums in rural and mountain communities.

Local officials in mountain resort areas west of Denver had been crying ‘foul’ over sky-high premiums, which were among the highest in the nation.

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7:10am

Wed December 11, 2013
Shots - Health News

Enrollment Jumps At HealthCare.gov, Though Totals Still Lag

Originally published on Wed December 11, 2013 10:56 am

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius' shadow appeared behind the lectern as she spoke about the implementation of the federal health law in Detroit in November.
Paul Sancya AP

Enrollment in the federal government's new health insurance exchange picked up sharply in November, but the number of people signing up for coverage still trails original forecasts. Officials from the Obama administration say they expect the pace of enrollments will continue to increase now that the insurance website is working more smoothly.

Users have until Dec. 23 to sign up for coverage that begins in January.

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4:00pm

Wed October 30, 2013
Shots - Health News

Notices Canceling Health Insurance Leave Many On Edge

One person who got a letter canceling his health insurance was Rep. Cory Gardner, R-Colo. He holds up the letter during a congressional hearing Wednesday on insurance problems. He says his family chose to buy private insurance rather than use the congressional plan.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

President Obama repeated this line or a variation of it many times during the campaign to pass his landmark health care bill: "If you like your health care plan, you'll be able to keep your health care plan, period."

But while that might be true for people who get health insurance through their employer, it's not true for many people who buy their policies in the individual market — about 5 percent of the nation's policyholders.

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9:34am

Fri September 27, 2013
Shots - Health News

Lessons About Insurance In The Obamacare Data Dump

Chicago insurance broker Sean Whaley told The Associated Press earlier this month that his self-employed clients were frustrated that didn't have the information to plan ahead for their families' health care costs in 2014.
M. Spencer Green AP

This week the Department of Health and Human Services released a ton of information about how insurance sold in 36 states under the Affordable Care Act will work.

Most of it came in the form of data showing the number of carriers and their premium prices in hundreds of regions.

Until now we've seen information on subsidized policies to be sold through online marketplaces released in trickles by states that are creating their own online portals.

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1:43am

Wed September 4, 2013
Shots - Health News

For Hospital Patients, Observation Status Can Prove Costly

Originally published on Thu September 5, 2013 7:25 am

The next bed could cost you a lot if the hospital says you're there on observation.
iStockphoto.com

If you're on Medicare and you're in the hospital for a few days, you may think you're an inpatient. The hospital may have other ideas. Increasingly, hospitals are placing older patients on "observation status." They may be there for days, but technically they're still outpatients.

This is a big deal for someone on Medicare because follow-up treatment in a nursing home isn't covered unless someone has been an inpatient for at least three days. That's leaving some seniors on the hook for thousands of dollars in nursing home bills.

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