Affordable Care Act

Kansas and Missouri are among the states that would be affected if a federal court ruling on Obamacare subsidies stands.

As Jim McLean of the KHI News Service reports, consumers in both states could lose the subsidies that help make the coverage affordable.

A new report from the Department of Health and Human Services says the average out-of-pocket cost in Kansas for individual health insurance through the new federal marketplace is $67 a month. Bryan Thompson has more.

The report says the actual premium averages $290 a month, but most people qualify for a federal tax credit that covers three-fourths of that amount.

In fact, a little more than three out of every four Kansans buying insurance through the federal exchange qualify for some level of income-based tax credit.

A journalist who has covered the health reform debate for several national publications will be in Wichita next Wednesday to talk about the Affordable Care Act and the issue surrounding it.

Sarah Kliff worked for Politico and the Washington Post before recently moving to the new media venture

Jim McClean talked with Kliff recently and has this preview...

Kliff will be speaking next Wednesday afternoon at Wichita’s Old Town Hotel.

Bryan Thompson

A Washington Post blog called “The Fact Checker” gives a “Four Pinocchios” rating to recent claims by Kansas First District Congressman Tim Huelskamp about the Affordable Care Act

The rating is based on statements Huelskamp made during recent town hall meetings in Hays and Salina, when he was asked about the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare.

Another new study says that expanding Medicaid would help low-income workers in Kansas and boost the state’s economy.

This latest study comes from the Kansas Center for Economic Growth. Jim McLean of the KHI News Service has more.

The Medicaid expansion study was funded in part by a consortium of Kansas health foundations, some of which also provide support to the KHI News Service.

Dave Ranney /

Kansas Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger, the Kansas state chapter of AARP, and several other groups are calling on Governor Sam Brownback to veto a bill authorizing Kansas’s membership in an interstate health care compact.

Bill supporters say the compact would free the state from the new Affordable Care Act rules and regulations and allow it to control Medicaid and Medicare spending within its borders.

The Senate is also taking up a bill to bring Kansas into a multi-state compact asking to be exempted from the Affordable Care Act.

If Senators pass the bill today, it will go to Governor Sam Brownback.

The House approved it last month.

If the U.S. Congress consents, the compact lets participating states remove themselves from all federal health regulations.

Consumers and health care counselors struggled through problems with the federal online health insurance marketplace on Monday.

They were hit with a crush of late requests from Kansans trying to sign up for health coverage by the deadline.

The Kansas Association for the Medically Underserved trained most of the state's 170 or so health care counselors, or navigators.

The non-profit group reported that their schedules were packed with appointments ahead of the deadline.

The Kansas House has passed and sent to the Senate a bill that would allow Kansas to join several other states in an effort to take control of health care programs away from the federal government.

The main sponsor of the legislation in the House is Republican Brett Hildabrand.