United’s Slavitt Tapped for CMS Post

June 23, 2014

According to CMS, he’ll be principal deputy administrator, overseeing day-to-day operations for Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP and exchanges.  He was previously group executive vice president for United’s Optum, which was called in to help fix the troubled exchanges after the botched launch.  CMS also said it would hire a permanent chief executive as well as a chief technology officer for the federal exchange.  Republicans are warning of potential conflicts of interest in the Slavitt hiring.  As for the CEO and CTO hires, it was sorely needed.



$82 for Health Insurance

June 18, 2014

That’s how much the average subsidized person is paying monthly for health insurance on the exchanges, according to new HHS data covered on Vox by German Lopez.  Taxpayers picked up an average of $264 of the tab:

The report, published Wednesday, is the most in-depth look available so far at the prices that federal marketplace shoppers will pay for private health coverage. It shows the vast majority of shoppers will use federal subsidies to pay for insurance, significantly reducing their monthly price tag.

What’s Going on in Virginia?

June 11, 2014

First there’s the “insane” battle over the Medicaid expansion, as Sarah Kliff reports on Vox, and now House majority leader Eric Cantor has lost the Republican primary in his district to a Tea Party guy.  As Phil Rizzuto would have said, “Holy Cow!”

What’s it all mean?  Thomas Davis III, a Republican and former Virginia congressman, hit the nail on the head in this quote in The New York Times:

When Eric Cantor, a conservative and member of the leadership, is too moderate, it sends a chilling effect to other Republicans and makes it that much harder to cross over and work together.

Competition Growing on Exchanges

June 9, 2014

And that’s good news.  As Jason Millman of The Washington Post writes, increased competition is a sign that health plans are feeling confident about the exchanges.  There’s more:

Recent research suggests that more competition in the exchanges could help temper premium increases. Other new analysis shows that exchange plans, on average, are cheaper than individual plans offered outside the insurance marketplaces. And given the narrow networks in exchange plans, more insurers could mean better access to providers.

Opinion Poll Trends Negative on ObamaCare

November 26, 2013

From the Kaiser Family Foundation:


Quote of the Day: Duane Davis

November 15, 2013

Duane Davis, chief executive of Geisinger Health Plan, in an interview with us the day before Obama announced he would allow insurers to  extend for another year existing health plans that would otherwise be canceled under reform: “It’s pretty easy to say.  It’s pretty hard to unravel.”

Exchange Enrollment Way Below Expectations

November 12, 2013

Here are the latest tallies:

From The Wall Street Journal:

Fewer than 50,000 people had enrolled in plans through the federal health-care website as of last week, a fraction of the target.

From Avalere Health:

12 state-based exchanges have enrolled about 3 percent of their expected 2014 exchange participants. Together, the 12 states have enrolled 49,100 people in exchanges based on data released by the states, as of Nov. 10. By the end of 2014, Avalere projects these states will account for 1.4 million exchange enrollees.


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