Affordable Care Act

Kaiser Family Foundation

The U.S. Supreme Court’s rejection of the latest legal challenge to the Affordable Care Act preserves federal tax subsidies that nearly 70,000 Kansans used this year to help them purchase health insurance.

If the decision released Thursday had gone the other way, those Kansans, many of whom were previously uninsured, might have been forced to drop their coverage.

A state representative from Wichita is leading an effort to urge Congress to reconsider the future of the federal health law.

Kansas Rep. Dan Hawkins of Wichita joined his colleague Sen. Mary Pilcher-Cook of Shawnee in drafting a letter to Republican leaders in Congress.

The state lawmakers, who are the leaders of the Legislature's health committees, want Congress to re-examine the 2010 federal health care law after the U.S. Supreme Court rules on a key provision over federal subsidies.

Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

Within the next couple weeks, the U.S. Supreme Court will issue a decision regarding the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act, popularly known as Obamacare.

The notion of government-supported health insurance for Americans has long generated 

AAFP

Federal officials estimate that more than 1.3 million Kansans now have private health insurance that includes preventive services at no out-of-pocket cost. Heartland Health Monitor’s Bryan Thompson has more.

To meet the standards set by the Affordable Care Act, health insurance plans must offer a range of preventive services at no out-of-pocket cost to the patient--things like an annual wellness check-up, cancer screenings, and recommended immunizations.

The idea is to encourage people to catch serious health conditions like cancer or diabetes as early as possible.

Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

After five years of the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, and the failure after more than 50 votes in Congress to get the needed support to repeal the signature legislative achievement of Barack Obama’s presidency, Republicans in Congress are dropping the effort for repeal and are turning to issues such as trade and tax reform.

Rates of Uninsured Falling Everywhere... Except Kansas

Feb 25, 2015

After the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, often called Obamacare, uninsured rates are falling in every state…except in Kansas. Heartland Health Monitor's Dan Margolies reports on the new Gallup survey released on Tuesday.

Although not statistically significant, the Sunflower State’s 1.9 point increase makes it the only state in the country to witness an uptick in its uninsured rate.

In 2013, 12.5 percent of the state’s residents lacked health insurance, according to Gallup. In 2014, that percentage had risen to 14.4 percent.

healthcare.gov

Obamacare enrollment continues to climb in Kansas. Jim McLean (of the KHI News Service) has the latest numbers.

Link to related digital story from the KHI News Service: http://www.khi.org/news/article/kansas-and-missouri-record-big-jumps-in-healthcare.gov-enrollment

Aileen LeBlanc

**UPDATE**  

The latest data published by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services indicates 96,226 Kansans have signed up for health care coverage through HealthCare.gov

This story originally aired during Morning Edition on Thursday, February 12, 2015

Federal health officials say just over 39,000 Kansans signed up for health care coverage through the federally run exchange in the first month of open enrollment.

Those who signed up at healthcare.gov as of December 15 will have coverage Thursday. People who sign up by Jan. 15 will be covered beginning Feb. 1.

About 57,000 people enrolled in the exchange in Kansas last year. State officials hope more sign up this year.

People can sign up for individual or family coverage until February 15 at www.healthcare.gov.

State insurance commissioner-elect Ken Selzer says creating a more robust market is a top goal of his time in office.

Selzer says greater competition will address problems with the federal health care overhaul.

He is confident that he can attract companies into the state and encourage others already in Kansas to do more business.

Ken Selzer is a Republican and takes office January 12th.

He'll replacing retiring Commissioner Sandy Praeger.

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