State, Federal Health Law Implementation Efforts Examined

Media outlets report on a range of health overhaul issues, including efforts in some states to use the sweeping measure for their own coverage expansion plans or to step up their oversight of the insurance industry. Meanwhile, the Obama administration says that, to date, 79 waivers from the overhaul requirements sought by employers or health care providers have been refused. Additionally, debate surrounding the law's treatment of insurance broker fees and questions about job loss continue.

The Associated Press: States Put Their Own Spin On Obama Health Care Law
Rancor over President Barack Obama's health care overhaul has largely overshadowed some states' efforts to use the law to help them move as fast as possible to insure more people and increase control over insurance companies (3/15).

The Wall Street Journal's Washington Wire: Health Law Waivers Scorecard: Yes: 1,040. No: 79.
The Obama administration Tuesday answered Republican lawmakers seeking to know how many employers and health care providers have been refused waivers from certain requirements of the federal health care overhaul. The answer: 79 as of late February, according to documents released this week by the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.  By comparison, 1,040 entities received the waivers. Those denied waivers include Mesa Air Group and local branches of the Teamsters and United Food and Commercial Workers unions (Adamy, 3/15).

The New York Times Prescriptions Blog: The Debate Over Brokers' Fees
The issue of how to weigh the cost of paying insurance brokers under the new federal health care law is up for debate again, even though state regulators made their final recommendations last year  (Abelson, 3/15).

Minnesota Public Radio: Health Care Reform's Job Impact Uncertain
The idea that [the health] law will eliminate jobs is particularly troublesome at a time when the nation struggles to climb out of a recession and millions are out of work. ... Overall, the CBO says the net effect on the job market is likely to be small. And the CBO is not alone. "We have fairly detailed projections of jobs by industry and occupation that include health care and at least attempted to try to handicap the next 10 years based on changes in the health care law, said Anthony Carnavale, who directs the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce. "Although I must say we didn't find much effect" (Stawicki, 3/16).

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