affordable care act

Basic Health Plan Discussion Focused on Policy Paper by December

House Bill 2934 has been downsized from a directive to the federal government to a work group discussion that will flesh out the policy and further inform the debate for the Legislature in 2016. Advocates say the move will not delay the potential implementation of a health plan for immigrants and working-class Oregonians in 2017.

The state took a baby step towards implementing a Basic Health Plan, which would provide healthcare for thousands of legal immigrants left uninsured by Obamacare and tens of thousands of low-income people who currently qualify for subsidized health insurance on the exchange.

Hospital Profits Soar in 2014

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New data reveals that the majority of hospitals in Oregon are witnessing record breaking profit margins.

Oregon hospitals are earning higher profit margins than ever before, thanks to the Affordable Care Act. With fewer uninsured people walking into their doors and Medicaid boosting their bottom line, the operating margin –also known as profit – was at an all-time high at the end of 2014.

Democratic Leaders Spike Women’s Health Bill Over Abortion Issue

The bill would have codified Affordable Care Act protections for reproductive healthcare and brought Oregon insurance law in line with the federal government, but it divided Democrats, some of whom objected to language in the bill around abortion. The bill was stopped before it could have a public hearing.

The Democratic leadership of Oregon’s Legislature, including Senate President Peter Courtney, D-Salem, has killed a bill that would have ensured a woman’s access to abortion and blocked sponsor and Health Chairwoman Sen.

1,582 Private Health Insurance Enrollments Climb 66,268 in 2014

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Financial analysis shows big sales by Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon, continued financial losses for Kaiser Permanente

The ranks of the privately insured continued to grow in Oregon last year.

The Affordable Care Act Is Turning Five Years Old!

Over 1.1 million Oregonians now have coverage, a 64 percent increase over 2013.

OPINION -- Since President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into law five years ago, Oregonians have sent a powerful message: The Affordable Care Act is working, and the quality health coverage offered on the Health Insurance Marketplace is a product that consumers need, want and like.

Massive Expansion of Insured, Slow Growth of Workforce, Monopolies Create Cost Conundrum

Can we harmonize access, quality and the cost of healthcare? That’s the question panelists at Willamette University’s symposium on 21st Century Healthcare tried to answer – with data.

Peter Graven, health economist at OHSU’s Center for Health Systems Effectiveness, presented the latest report showing that, as of July, only 5.6 percent of Oregonians were still uninsured.  “Oregon had the largest increase in Medicaid driving a large decrease in the uninsured,” Graven said.

Dental Hygienists Struggle with Credentialing to Treat Low- Income Population

Current Medicaid law requires dental hygienists who practice independently to be credentialed individually with health insurers which limits their ability to care for people on the Oregon Health Plan.

Some intrepid dental hygienists in Oregon are looking to serve the state’s low-income, non-mobile and rural residents through a state certification that allows them to see patients without a dentist’s supervision.

Will the American Paradigm Begin to Shift from Being Big Business to a Human Rights Issue?

The author contends that everyone should have access to timely and adequate healthcare including dental care.

OPINION -- They say that once you’ve lived outside of your own country long enough, you feel like a foreigner when you return home. While living and working in Switzerland, I went to see my gynecologist in Geneva, who was educated in the U.S. He wanted me to have an MRI done right away.

Health Co-Op Wants More Transparency from Insurance Division

Oregon’s Health Co-Op, which has struggled to get a foothold in the Oregon insurance market, has proposed legislation to provide insurers a better appeal process while requiring the Insurance Division to better explain its rate-setting decisions for plans sold on the individual and small business markets.

The Oregon Health Co-Op wants significant changes to the state’s health insurance rate review program, which its president says will provide more transparency to the review process and a better chance for due process than currently exists.

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