Number of Health Plans to Grow in Second Year of Obamacare

By Mary Agnes Carey, Kaiser Health News Staff Writer The number of health insurance companies offering plans in the marketplaces this fall will increase by 25 percent, giving consumers more choices for coverage, Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell announced Sept. 23. When the marketplace enrollment reopens in November, 77 new insurers will be offering coverage in the 44 states for which HHS had data, which includes the 36 states that use the federal marketplace and eight states that …

Overall, Obamacare Premiums to Fall in 2015

By Jay Hancock, Kaiser Health News In preliminary but encouraging news for consumers and taxpayers, insurance filings show that average premiums will decline slightly next year in 16 major cities for a benchmark Obamacare plan. Prices for a benchmark “silver” or mid-priced plan sold through the health law’s online marketplaces aren’t all moving in the same direction, however, a report from the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) shows. (Kaiser Health News is an editorially independent program of the foundation.) In Nashville, the premium …

Health Law Sign-Ups on Track to Hit 7 Million

By Josh Lederman and Ricardo Zaldivar, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) – Beating expectations, President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul was on track to sign up more than 7 million Americans for health insurance on deadline day, Monday, government officials told the Associated Press. The 7 million target, thought to be out of reach by most experts, was in sight on a day that saw surging consumer interest as well as vexing computer glitches that slowed sign-ups on the HealthCare.gov website. …

Obama Eases Rules on Canceled Health Plans

President Barack Obama will ease rules that were causing some people to lose their health insurance under the health care law, he announced Nov. 14. Obama had repeatedly promised that consumers who like their health insurance plans could keep them under the new system. But some people who buy their own insurance – as opposed to getting it through an employer – found their plans canceled by insurers in recent weeks because they didn’t meet the minimum standards the law …

Which Is Better: Obamacare or the Affordable Care Act?

Praise be to Jimmy Kimmel, the late-night talk show host, for exposing what people might like the least about Obamacare. Could it be the fact that President Obama’s name is part of it? On the eve of the rollout of health insurance marketplaces created by the health care law otherwise known as the Affordable Care Act, Kimmel planted a camera crew on the street to put the following question to passersby: “Which is better – the Affordable Care Act or …

Losing a Job and Insurance? The New Marketplace Might Help

By Michelle Andrews, for Kaiser Health News Workers who lose their jobs and their employer-based health insurance will have new coverage options when the Affordable Care Act’s state marketplaces open in October. But consumer advocates are concerned many may not realize this and lock themselves into pricier coverage than they need. Today, the only option for many laid-off workers is to continue their employer-provided coverage for up to 18 months under the federal law known as COBRA. Because they have to pay the …