Three million people have now enrolled in the new health exchanges created by the Affordable Care Act, with a thirty percent jump in December.
But things in Texas are not as rosy, as enrollment continues to trickle in despite the state leading the country in the number of uninsured -- Texas has nearly five million uninsured people, according to the Texas Medical Association.
Originally published on Thu January 23, 2014 4:30 pm
Texas has imposed strict new regulations on the insurance helpers, or navigators, who work in the community to enroll people in health plans under the Affordable Care Act.
The navigators must register with the state, undergo a background check and fingerprinting, and complete 20 hours of additional training — beyond the 20 to 30 hours of federal training they've already received.
Following months of hearings and heated testimony, the commissioner for the Texas Department of Insurance has reduced the number of requirements the state is asking of Affordable Care Act navigators.
The new rules posted on the TDI website shows 20 fewer training hours for the navigators than the original 40 additional hours the state was proposing. State Rep. Lon Burnam, D-Fort Worth, is calling the updated set of rules a compromise.
Texas Matters: Wendy Davis and Greg Abbott released fundraising numbers this week, leading to a bigger conversation about the cost of campaigning in Texas, which considering the size of the state and inclusion of two of the top 10 media markets is expensive to say the least. Also on this show: Marijuana in Texas, prescription drugs from Mexico, ACA navigators and Google invests in a Texas wind farm.
As health insurance plan enrollment passes six million, the White House is paying special attention to uninsured Latino citizens to help them find coverage. The administration is also encouraging families who are of mixed citizenship status to apply despite any fears.
Currently, the Department of Health and Human Services does not have specific information on the breakdown of enrollment numbers by race -- the data are still being compiled.
Under a campaign to get more Latinos enrolled, 344,000 calls were made in Spanish nationwide; that’s about 4 percent of call volume.
Bexar County's CareLink program, which is run by University Health System, helps low-income citizens access healthcare. So does the Affordable Care Act, and as the ACA continues to be implemented, changes are coming to CareLink, which assists more than 50,000 people.
The Texas Department of Insurance is hearing it’s final set of feedback regarding state-mandated requirements for federal navigators working for Texas nonprofits. Those requirements include registration and training fees that are near $1,000 per person.
The additional rulemaking by the TDI is a result of a letter submitted by Gov. Rick Perry about his concerns on the lack of federal requirements for navigators, and a state law authored by state Sen. Kirk Watson, D-Austin, who spoke against the new rules.
Originally published on Mon December 30, 2013 3:28 pm
Michelle Snyder, the official who oversaw the creation of the problem-plagued HealthCare.gov website, is retiring.
In a statement on Monday, Marilyn Tavenner, the head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, announced Snyder's departure from the agency, saying she had originally planned to retire at the end of 2012 but had stayed on at Tavenner's request to help "with the challenges facing CMS in 2013."
When it comes to health care, the rollout of the Affordable Care Act was supposed to be measured in the millions. That's how many people were expected to sign up for insurance to begin on Jan. 1.
But for both supporters and opponents of the law, there's one number that sticks out above all others. Six. That's how many people actually managed to enroll through the federal HealthCare.gov website the first day it opened, Oct. 1.