Affordable Care Act

Through years of acrimony over the relative merits of Obamacare, one kind of health insurance has remained steady, widespread and relatively affordable: Employer-sponsored plans.

Job-based medical plans still cover more Americans than any other type, typically with greater benefits and lower out-of-pocket expense. Recent cost increases for this sort of coverage have been a tiny fraction of those for Obamacare plans for individuals.

Stephen George | wfpl.org

The average cost of a gunshot victim’s emergency room or hospital stay in Kentucky was $10,000 in 2014. That’s according to a report out from the Urban Institute.

With open enrollment season for buying health coverage under the Affordable Care Act ending Tuesday, it seemed like an apt time to talk with folks in charge of some of the state insurance marketplaces created by the federal health law.

It's the fifth year these marketplaces, also called exchanges, have been running. The marketplaces are the go-to option for people under 65 who don't get health insurance through work or qualify for Medicaid.

J. Tyler Franklin/WFPL News

Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul introduced a bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act on Wednesday that would do away with the law’s major reforms, including the requirement to have health insurance or pay a penalty and the ban on insurers refusing coverage for those with pre-existing conditions.

Republicans have a plan to replace Obamacare. In fact, they have several.

What they don't have is consensus on which one will guide the party's effort to reshape an insurance system that provides coverage for some 20 million Americans.

Natalia Merzlyakova, 123rf Stock Photo

  “Medicaid block grant.”

You might’ve heard this term in the past few days. Republican members of Congress have touted the health care idea for many years. But it wasn’t until this weekend — when a top aide to President Donald Trump endorsed it — that the term really turned heads.

More people have health insurance than ever before, but many still struggle to pay for care.

A recently released report says medical debt is the No. 1 reason consumers reported being contacted by a collection agency. If efforts to overhaul the Affordable Care Act result in more people losing their coverage, those numbers could rise.

A federal judge has ruled against the proposed acquisition of the health insurance company Humana by its larger rival, Aetna.

The decision is a victory for former President Obama's Justice Department, which sued Aetna last year to block the $34 billion merger, NPR's Yuki Noguchi reported.

The suit alleged that the merger would hurt competition in the health care market, leading to higher prices for consumers and fewer services for Medicare patients.

Aleksey Butov, 123rf Stock Photo

Illinois is urging congressional leaders to avoid "hasty" or "incomplete" action as they proceed with a planned repeal of the Affordable Care Act. 

Natalia Merzlyakova, 123rf Stock Photo

Gov. Matt Bevin’s administration is moving forward with a plan that would alter the state’s expanded Medicaid system, even if the Affordable Care Act is repealed or replaced by Congress.

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