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    Health Care Reform:

    A Guide to Health Insurance & Affordable Care Act

    News and Features Related to Health Care Reform

    1. Health Plans’ Drug Coverage Can Trigger Confusion

      By Julie Appleby Patients getting chemotherapy or other complex medications may have a sudden panic when shopping for health insurance: Their drugs often don’t appear to be covered. “People think, ‘Jeez, what do I do now?’” said Anna Howard, policy principal at the American Cancer Society Cancer Act

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    2. ‘Multi-State’ Plans Unavailable In Many States

      By Michelle Andrews A health law insurance program that was expected to boost consumer choice and competition on the marketplaces has slipped off course and is so far failing to meet expectations. Since just a few insurers, or sometimes just one, dominate the market for individuals and small busines

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    3. Should You Buy Insulin Without A Prescription?

      By Sarah Jane Tribble, Ideastream As anyone who needs insulin to treat diabetes can tell you, that usually means regular checkups at the doctor’s office to fine-tune the dosage, monitor blood-sugar levels and check for complications. But here’s a little known fact: Some forms of insulin can be bough

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    4. Uninsured Face Average $969 Penalty In 2016

      By Phil Galewitz The penalty for failing to have health insurance is going up, perhaps even higher than you expected. Among uninsured individuals who are not exempt from the Affordable Care Act penalty, the average household fine for not having insurance in 2015 will be $661, rising to $969 per hous

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    5. 2016 PPO Plans Remove Out-Of-Network Cost Limits

      By Julie Appleby Citing the flexibility they offer, many consumers choose health plans that provide some coverage outside the insurer’s network. Traditionally, such plans not only paid a portion of the bill, but also set an annual cap on how much policy holders paid toward out-of-network care. Not a

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    6. KY Strategy Will Test Need For State-Run Exchanges

      By Phil Galewitz Kentucky Gov.-elect Matt Bevin’s plan to dismantle the state’s successful health insurance exchange, Kynect, and shift consumers to the federal one would likely have little impact on consumers, health experts say. “The federal exchange is a perfectly viable alternative,” said Jon Ki

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    7. As HMOs Dominate, Alternatives Get Costlier

      By Julie Appleby and Jordan Rau Consumers seeking health policies with the most freedom in choosing doctors and hospitals are finding far fewer of those plans offered on the insurance marketplaces next year. And the premiums are rising faster than for other types of coverage. The plans, usually know

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    8. UnitedHealth Warns Of Marketplace Exit – Start Of A Trend Or Push For White House Action?

      By Julie Appleby UnitedHealthGroup laid out a litany of reasons Thursday why it might stop selling individual health insurance through federal and state markets in 2017 — a move some see as an effort to compel the Obama administration to ease regulations and make good on promised payments. Those pro

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    9. Cancer Meds Often Mean Big Out-Of-Pocket Costs

      By Julie Appleby Cancer patients shopping on federal and state insurance marketplaces often find it difficult to determine whether their drugs are covered and how much they will pay for them, the advocacy arm of the American Cancer Society says in a report that also calls on regulators to restrict h

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    10. CA Exchange Offers Adult Dental Coverage

      By Barbara Feder Ostrov Thousands of California adults are signing up for dental insurance offered for the first time by California’s health insurance exchange, Covered California, officials said Wednesday. About 33,000 adults have signed up for the dental plans, including about 6,000 who also are s

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