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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Americans’ Health Priorities Diverge From Washington’s Focus on Obamacare

In this column for The Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank, Drew Altman finds the public’s healthcare priorities have more to do with drug costs and other real world issues people deal with using the health care system than the ongoing partisan wrangling over the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

How Are Hospitals Faring Under the Affordable Care Act? Early Experiences from Ascension Health

Expanded health insurance coverage through the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is having a major impact on many of the nation’s hospitals through increases in the demand for care, increased patient revenues, and lower uncompensated care costs for the uninsured. This report examines the early experiences with the ACA by Ascension Health, the delivery subsidiary of the nation’s largest not-for-profit health system, Ascension. It finds that, overall, Ascension hospitals in Medicaid expansion states saw increased Medicaid discharges, increased Medicaid revenue, and decreased cost of care for the poor, while hospitals in non-expansion states saw a very small increase in Medicaid discharges, a decline in Medicaid revenue, and growth in cost of care to the poor.

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Evolving Picture of Nine Safety-Net Hospitals: Implications of the ACA and Other Strategies

Safety-net hospitals are an integral part of the U.S. health care landscape, providing care to some of the nation’s most medically vulnerable populations, including Medicaid enrollees and the uninsured. With the implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the U.S. health care system is rapidly changing, and safety-net hospitals need to make major adjustments to survive in the post-reform environment. This brief draws on interviews with executives at nine safety-net hospital systems and examines how their hospitals have fared since major coverage provisions of the ACA came into effect in January 2014. The brief also examines new and ongoing strategies that the hospitals are adopting in the face of a quickly changing health care environment. While acknowledging the importance of the ACA, executives at each system in the study noted that other non-ACA related factors have also shaped how their hospitals fared over the last year. The hospitals in the study were: Cook County Health and Hospital System (CCHHS); Denver Health (Denver Health); Harris Health System (Harris Health); New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC); Parkland Health and Hospital System (Parkland); Santa Clara Valley Health and Hospital System (SCVHHS); San Francisco General Hospital (SFGH); University Medical Center of Southern Nevada (UMC), and Virginia Commonwealth University Health System (VCU). These hospitals participated in two earlier related studies that examined how the systems were preparing for health care reform.

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Medicaid Expansion, Health Coverage, and Spending: An Update for the 21 States That Have Not Expanded Eligibility

Ever since the Supreme Court ruled in June 2012 that states could effectively choose whether or not to accept the Affordable Care Act’s expansion of Medicaid eligibility, that choice has been one of the most prominent and often one of the most contentious issues for states. In this report, we provide new projections of the impact of Medicaid expansion on health coverage, Medicaid enrollment, and costs in states that have not expanded Medicaid.

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

New Analysis Finds US Individual Insurance Market Grew 46 Percent in First Full Year of Affordable Care Act

A new analysis from the Kaiser Family Foundation finds that the nation’s individual insurance market grew 46 percent to 15.5 million people in the first year plans could be purchased through the Affordable Care Act’s marketplaces, which offer premium assistance to low- and moderate-income people. Four states — California, Florida,…

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

At Tax Time, No Public Backlash Over Obamacare’s Individual Mandate

As tax season closes, Drew Altman looks at why the ACA’s individual mandate and tax credit reconciliation process “passed their first major hurdles this tax season with no significant public backlash,” in his latest column for The Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank.

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

At Tax Time, No Public Backlash Over Obamacare’s Individual Mandate

This was published as a Wall Street Journal Think Tank column on April 21, 2015. Tax season has come and gone with no great outbreak of protest about the Affordable Care Act’s least popular provision: the individual mandate. This central element of the ACA was included to help ensure that the individual…

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Americans’ Views on the Affordable Care Act Hold Steady, with 43% Now Viewing It Favorably and 42% Unfavorably

Few Report Seeing Comparative Information about Health Care Prices and Quality, and Less Than 10% Use It Pocketbook and Consumer Issues Top Public’s List of Priorities for the President and Congress, Ahead of Several ACA-Related Issues This month’s Kaiser Health Tracking Poll finds public opinion on the health care law…

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Kaiser Health Tracking Poll: April 2015

This month’s Kaiser Health Tracking Poll finds public opinion of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) continues to be almost evenly split The poll also asks about health care priorities for the President and Congress, and the concern that comes out on top for Democrats, Republicans and independents alike is making sure that high-cost drugs for chronic conditions are affordable to those who need them. Other than high-cost prescription drugs, Democrats, Republicans and independents have different ideas of their top priorities in health care. The poll also assesses Americans’ use of comparative price and quality information about doctors, hospitals and health plans.

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Kaiser Health Policy News Index: April 2015

The health policy stories included in this month’s Kaiser Health Policy News Index were followed closely by about 4 in 10 Americans. Of the stories asked about this month, the one that garnered the most attention was coverage of the white police officer charged with the murder of an unarmed black man in South Carolina. Over half report closely following other stories, including the Germanwings plane crash in the French Alps, a new religious freedom law in Indiana that allows business owners to refuse service to gay customers, negotiations over Iran’s Nuclear Program, and a terrorist attack by Islamic militants at a university in Kenya. The only non-health story to receive less attention than the health stories this month was coverage of the Congressional Republican budget proposals, followed closely by just over a third of the public.

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