In State Health Care Markets, Results May Vary

States are readying their rollout of Obamacare. We’ll check in across the country.

The state of Oregon is one state putting its full resources behind their health care exchange. The Cover Oregon campaign will have spent $2.9 million in outreach efforts. (CoverOregon)

The state of Oregon is one state putting its full resources behind their health care exchange. The Cover Oregon campaign will have spent $2.9 million in outreach efforts by the Oct. 1 roll out of the state exchange. (CoverOregon)

With day one of Obamacare fast approaching and the debt ceiling hanging in the balance, states are facing choices. Oregon is using folksy music to promote its new health insurance exchange. Washington state has ads about snowboarding. In Florida and Missouri, lawmakers are regulating who can and cannot answer questions about signing up for new coverage. This hour, On Point: States and Obamacare’s implementation.


Noam Levey, national healthcare reporter at the Los Angeles Times‘ Washington Bureau. (@NoamLevey)

Jenny Gold, health care reporter for Kaiser Health News in Washington. (@JennyAGold)

Ryan Barker, Vice President of health policy at the Missouri Foundation for Health. (@CoverMissouri)

Michael Marchand, director of communications at the Washington (State) Health Benefit Exchange. (@MMNextSteps)

From The Reading List

Kaiser Health News: Navigators Say GOP Lawmakers’ Information Requests are ‘Shocking’ — “Organizations that received the latest round of health law navigator grants say last week’s letter from House Republicans could have a chilling effect on efforts to hire and train outreach workers to sign up Americans for health insurance by Oct. 1the opening day for  new online insurance marketplaces. The letters were signed by 15 Republican members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee and requested that the organizations provide extensive new documents about their participation in the program and schedule a congressional briefing by Sept. 13.  The letters went out to 51 organizations–including hospitals, universities, Indian tribes, patient advocacy groups and food banks—out of 104 that shared $67 million in grants.”

Los Angeles Times: As Healthcare Law Rolls Out, Its Effects Will Depend on Your State — “As President Obama’s healthcare law rolls out next month, even supporters acknowledge there will be problems. But Americans who live in states backing the Affordable Care Actwill receive substantial protections and assistance unavailable to residents in states still fighting the 2010 law. That could mean confusion and higher insurance premiums for millions of consumers in states resisting the law. Leaders in these resistant states have not set up consumer hot lines. Several state insurance regulators are refusing to make sure health plans offer new protections required by the law, such as guaranteed coverage for people who are ill. In response to the law, Florida suspended its authority to review how much insurance companies charge consumers.”

The Atlantic: No, Obamacare Isn’t The Reason Emory is Laying Off 101 Staffers — “What’s happening? Reports about 101 layoffs at Emory are circulating widely in conservative media, including the Drudge Report and The Weekly Standard. A local Atlanta TV station, WSB, confirmed the layoffs with an Emory Healthcare spokesman. “Emory Healthcare to cut 100 jobs partly because of Obamacare,” the station reported Friday, tipped off by a disgruntled employee who described a presentation where employees heard the news. ‘The saddest part,’ the employee wrote the station, ‘is when during the announcement we were told our job loss is due to the new affordable healthcare plan.’ But the real story behind Emory’s layoffs is more complex than what WSB reported, and doesn’t really fit into the Obamacare debate. It’s really about the changing practice of psychiatry.”



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