Chris Weaver has covered hospital billing practices, insurers' strategies, and states' struggles with health spending for the news service. Before joining KHN, he wrote for the Part B News
, ProPublica and various print and online publications. Before stumbling into journalism (he has a master's degree in journalism from the Univ. of Maryland), Weaver worked on health care projects in post-Katrina New Orleans. | Contact: ChrisW@kff.org
"The clock is running out," says the health care consultant who has been working with states on the issue.
Blue Shield of California’s decision to cap profits at 2 percent was widely applauded, but other health insurers aren’t likely to follow suit.
Tight budgets are driving more than a dozen states to ask foundations for financial help with setting up exchanges and taking other actions required under the federal health law.
Even critics of managed care are warming to the idea of including nearly 400,000 seniors and disabled person now receiving health care through the traditional Medi-Cal program. The shift to managed care begins today and will be phased in.
Dr. Joshua Sharfstein says his state, which is well ahead of many in implementing the overhaul, is eager to leverage federal help to improve health options.
Some private plans serving people in Medicare and Medicaid have set up health care centers to help make sure patients get needed treatments and avoid hospitalizations.
Nearly half of the states have received some type of help, including 11 states with Republican governors.
Interest groups, businesses and other policy proponents are pushing to capitalize on states' dire Medicaid shortfalls.
Health insurance companies respond to new regulations by expanding into related – and unregulated – businesses.
Democrats say Gov. Scott Walker’s proposal to tackle a two-year $3.6 billion deficit by making speedy changes in health care programs needs wider scrutiny.