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Health Care

Common Core GOP’s latest salvo

posted: 04/20/2014 4:32 a.m. Discuss

The health-care law may be Republicans’ favorite weapon against Democrats this year, but there is another issue roiling their party and shaping the establishment-versus-grass-roots divide ahead of the 2016 presidential primaries : the Common Core.

Private option a divider in race for Senate’s District 17

posted: 04/20/2014 4:09 a.m. Discuss

An architect of Arkansas’ version of the Medicaid expansion is running for the state Senate in District 17, but has two opponents, including one who opposes government-funded private health-insurance policies for poor Arkansans.

3,000 waiting for disability services, panel says

posted: 04/19/2014 3:17 a.m. Discuss

More than 3,000 Arkansans with disabilities are waiting for services to help them live outside state institutions, a group of health-care officials were told during the Arkansas Health Disparities Conference on Friday.

Obama: Haul for health law hits 8 million

posted: 04/18/2014 3:24 a.m. Comment 1

Eight million people signed up for insurance under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act in the law’s first year, President Barack Obama said Thursday, declaring that Republicans should stop trying to repeal the measure and work to improve it instead.

Private-option tab at $496 per client

posted: 04/18/2014 3:17 a.m. Discuss

The cost of providing coverage to Medicaid recipients under Arkansas’ so-called private option has continued to rise, with the state paying insurance companies just over $490 per client in premiums and cost-sharing subsidies this month.

Expert: Insurance tweaks save

posted: 04/17/2014 5:21 a.m. Comment 1

Arkansas could save about $88 million in state tax dollars next year by adopting insurance-plan options that would encourage more low wage public school employees to enroll in the state’s expanded Medicaid program, a consultant told state lawmakers on Wednesday.

Census Bureau shift makes health-law appraisal harder

posted: 04/16/2014 5:06 a.m. Discuss

The Census Bureau, the authoritative source of health-insurance data for more than three decades, is changing its annual survey so thoroughly that it will be difficult to measure the effects of President Barack Obama’s health-care law in the next report, due this fall, census officials said.

42 physicians in state head Medicare list

posted: 04/13/2014 5:06 a.m. Comments 6

Oncologists, rheumatologists and ophthalmologists topped the list of Arkansas physicians who received the highest total Medicare payments in 2012, according to a review of federal data released last week.

Private-option law focus in GOP race

posted: 04/13/2014 4:39 a.m. Comments 2

State Sen. Missy Irvin, R-Mountain View, who voted for Medicaid expansion in 2013 and then voted against it this year, will have to defeat a foe of the expansion in the May 20 primary to return to the Legislature in 2015.

Burwell touted at Sebelius sendoff

posted: 04/12/2014 3:40 a.m. Discuss

President Barack Obama praised outgoing Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius for helping to steer his health-care law’s comeback after a rocky rollout, even as he nominated a successor aimed at helping the White House move past the political damage.

Agency not forthcoming, legislator says

posted: 04/11/2014 2:57 a.m. Discuss

Arkansas Sen. Bryan King said Thursday that he believes the Department of Human Services is withholding information about the state’s private-option Medicaid expansion plan, which uses federal funds to purchase private health insurance for low-income Arkansans.

Official explains lid on QualChoice cap

posted: 04/10/2014 5:21 a.m. Discuss

Arkansas Insurance Commissioner Jay Bradford said he has been tight-lipped about a Little Rock health-insurance company’s cap on enrollment through the state’s insurance exchange because he feared that the release of information about it could hurt the company competitively.

Drug-treatment spending a growing Medicare cost

posted: 04/10/2014 5:11 a.m. Discuss

An analysis of government data released Wednesday shows that the cost of drugs administered by doctors accounts for a growing piece of Medicare’s spending and varies widely from region to region in the United States.

7,832 more buy policies on hub; total hits 41,402

posted: 04/10/2014 4:47 a.m. Discuss

Enrollment in plans on Arkansas’ health-insurance exchange among those who did not qualify for Medicaid rose by about 7,800 people during a two-week span that ended Sunday, according to figures released by the state Insurance Department.

Medicare releases data on billing by physicians

posted: 04/09/2014 5:11 a.m. Comment 1

The Medicare program is the source of a small fortune for many U.S. doctors, according to a trove of government records that reveal unprecedented details about physician billing practices around the nation.

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