Obama Expected To Highlight Calif.’s ACA Progress During Visit
During a visit to California on Friday, President Obama is expected to speak about the state's progress in implementing the Affordable Care Act, the Los Angeles Times reports (Levey, Los Angeles Times, 6/7).
According to federal officials, California has the country's largest health insurance market and about six million uninsured residents, making it a crucial place for ACA implementation.
The Obama administration seeks to have about seven million individuals across the U.S. enroll in state health insurance exchanges. Officials say that about 2.6 million of them need to be young and healthy individuals to help keep costs down for the overall pool of enrollees.
Nearly one-third of such young individuals live in California, Florida and Texas.
Meanwhile, the White House says that the ACA will give coverage opportunities to more than 10 million uninsured Latinos, many of whom live in California (AP/Sacramento Bee, 6/7).
Details of Expected Remarks
Senior officials in the Obama administration said thatÂ the presidentÂ plans to promote the ACA on his visit to San Jose, broadly outlining how the law works and highlighting partnerships aimed at promoting enrollment in the exchanges (Baker, "Healthwatch," The Hill, 6/7).
For example, Obama likely will praise a multimillion-dollar partnership between the not-for-profit California Endowment and major Spanish-language media outlets that seeks to inform Latinos about enrolling in the state's insurance exchange (Los Angeles Times, 6/7).
Obama also is expected to discuss efforts to encourage younger, healthier people to enroll in Covered California (Aliferis, "State of Health," KQED, 6/7).
In addition, Obama is expected to defend the law against arguments that premium rates in the exchanges will be too costly for individuals to purchase health plans through the marketplaces. He is expected to cite premium rate estimates released last month for California's exchange, which state officials said were lower than expected (Humer/Beasley, Reuters, 6/7).
In 2009, the Congressional Budget Office projected that the average annual rate of exchange plans would be about $5,200. Rates provided by Covered California officials averaged about $3,600 per year, before subsidies (California Healthline, 5/24).
Obama administration officials said they are "encouraged by what we see in California" regarding "competitive choices" ("State of Health," KQED, 6/7).Dan Mendelson --Â CEO of research firm Avalere Health -- said, "Implementation needs momentum, and creating momentum in California is a really good move" for the Obama administration. He added that California is "a large market and a positive market for the [p]resident" and that what the administration needs "to do right now is amp up the visibility around implementation" (Reuters, 6/7). This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.