obamacare

As we saw during the presidential campaign, abortion continues to be a wedge cultural and political issue in American politics. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay says that the rhetoric on this issue may be up, but abortions are down.( Advance copy of on-air commentary for Monday.) It’s been more than four decades since the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision in the Roe Versus Wade case made abortion legal in the United States. When the opinion was handed down in 1973, many thought it would...

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

State health care leaders are keeping a close watch on the future of the Affordable Care Act.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Sen. Josh Miller (D-Cranston) has had a front row seat during the implementation of Obamacare in Rhode Island. Now, the prospect of a Trump presidency is creating uncertainty among proponents of the law.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

A state of uncertainty lingers for Rhode Island’s online health insurance marketplace, HealthSource RI, now that Donald Trump has been elected president. Trump has promised to repeal Obamacare, which made the exchanges possible.

RIPR file photo

Open enrollment for health insurance plans on Rhode Island’s exchange, HealthSource RI, begins Tuesday, November 1 st . There will be fewer plans, but lower premiums this time around. Monthly premiums are increasing by double digits for health insurance plans sold on the federal Obamacare exchange. But in Rhode Island, HealthSource RI head Zach Sherman says it's just the opposite. “We’re actually seeing rates go down for 2017. Our current customers are going to see on average their rates go...

Kristin Gourlay / ripr

Sixty thousand more Rhode Islanders - Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Rhode Island commercial health insurance members - will be enrolled in health care projects designed to save money and improve care.

RIPR FILE

Time is running out to enroll in health insurance if you don’t already have it. And, the penalty for not having insurance goes up substantially in 2016. If you can afford health insurance but don’t buy it, the federal government will charge every adult in your household $695 dollars or two-point-five percent of your annual household income, whichever is higher. And if you can’t afford health insurance or don’t get it through work, you’re not alone. Most of the enrollees on HealthSource RI to...

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

A large medical practice is being recognized for its effort to save money and improve patient care. Coastal Medical has earned recognition from the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid. The high rating comes for Coastal Medical’s shared savings program, a new model of paying for health care under Obamacare . Here’s how it works: Coastal Medical has contracts with several health insurers that say, 'if you keep patients healthier, and save us money, we’ll split the savings with you.' “And...

Lifespan and Care New England, Rhode Island’s two largest hospital systems, have quietly revived merger talks, Lifespan ceo and president, Dr. Timothy Babineau, said today. In a brief interview, Babineau said the talks ``are in very early stages’’ and are in response to Care New England’s request for partnership proposals that was released last spring. The two large hospital chains, which control roughly 70 percent of the state’s health care market, have been down this road twice before, only...

Aaron Read

Just 5 percent of Rhode Islanders now lack health insurance and the uninsured rate has dropped by more than half since 2012, according to data released today by HealthSourceRI, the state’s Obamacare health exchange. The rate of Rhode Islanders who lack health insurance has declined from 11 percent in 2012 to 5 percent now. Anya Rader Wallack, HealthSource director, said the numbers show the Affordable Care Act is working best in states, like Rhode Island, that have expanded Medicaid and run...

U.S. Supreme Court

Today’s Supreme Court ruling on the Affordable Care Act means tax credits are still available for people who buy health insurance on the federal exchange. Rhode Island set up its own exchange, HealthSource RI. And because of that, the ruling would not have affected the Ocean State either way. Rhode Islanders who qualify for subsidies to help pay for health insurance will continue to receive them. Some state lawmakers wanted to scrap HealthSource and default to the federal exchange. But the...

RIPR FILE

A new poll shows that Rhode Islanders expect stronger political leadership over the next few years, although many still feel the state is going in the wrong direction. The poll was commissioned by the Hassenfeld Institute for Public Leadership at Bryant University. 43 percent of respondents say the state is going in the wrong direction. Yet 54 percent expect elected officials to provide strong leadership moving forward. For Rhode Island’s top problem, 30 percent of respondents cite job...

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

State lawmakers heard testimony Wednesday about a proposed tax on health insurance to pay for the state’s online health insurance exchange, HealthSource RI. Federal Obamacare money covered the startup cost of HealthSource RI – the state’s marketplace for individual and small business insurance plans. But now Rhode Island must come up with the money to keep it going, or turn it over to the feds. Gov. Gina Raimondo’s budget proposal includes a tax on every individual and small business health...

HealthSource RI is out with its most recent enrollment data. It looks like the state's online health insurance marketplace kept two-thirds (71%) of enrollees from last year and gained a quarter more (about 5,000 new enrollees). So with total enrollments for 2015 at 22,910, HealthSource RI didn't lose a bunch of customers but didn't gain a whole lot either. It's not clear how much the uncertainty surrounding the agency's future might have affected enrollment. And as a new leader - Anya Rader...

Ian Donnis / RIPR

Governor-elect Gina Raimondo on Sunday said she's nominating Elizabeth Roberts to lead the state Executive Office of Health and Human Services with the expectation that Roberts will make EOHHS a national leader in controlling growing Medicaid costs. Leading Health and Human Services is "a tremendously important role in Rhode Island," Raimondo said during a news conference at her transition office. "As I said many times on the campaign, every Rhode Islander deserves access to high-quality...

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