Latest California Healthline Stories
The Affordable Care Act has been on the books for nearly a decade. Parts of it have become ingrained in our health system ― and in our everyday life. But this could change, depending on a long-awaited 5th Circuit Court of Appeals decision regarding the law’s constitutionality.
Californians must have health insurance starting next year or face a hefty tax penalty. But, as with the now-defunct federal tax penalty for being uninsured, some people will be exempt.
Is the entire Affordable Care Act unconstitutional? That was the question before a federal appeals court in New Orleans this week. Two of the three judges on the panel seemed inclined to agree with a lower court that the elimination of the tax penalty for failure to maintain coverage could mean the entire health law should fall. Also this week, President Donald Trump wants to improve care for people with kidney disease. Joanne Kenen of Politico, Kimberly Leonard of the Washington Examiner and Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss this, plus courts blocking efforts to require drug prices in TV ads and to kick Planned Parenthood out of the federal family planning program. Plus, Rovner interviews University of Michigan law professor Nicholas Bagley about the latest legal threat to the ACA.
The Affordable Care Act is again being put to the test after a lower court judge ruled the massive health law unconstitutional. Could the case ricochet back to the Supreme Court in the throes of the 2020 presidential campaign season?
Gov. Gavin Newsom wants to help an estimated 850,000 Californians pay their health insurance premiums and would fund his plan with a tax penalty on people who don’t have coverage. If he succeeds, California would be the first state to subsidize middle-income people who make too much to qualify for federal financial aid.
Even though the number of people renewing their Covered California health plans increased this year, new enrollment plunged by nearly a quarter compared with last year, posting a bigger drop than the federal health insurance exchange, healthcare.gov, which saw a 16 percent decrease. Officials largely blame the elimination of the federal tax penalty for people without insurance.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom made health care a priority in his proposed state budget, asking lawmakers to authorize state-funded financial aid for health insurance, impose a penalty on uninsured Californians and expand Medicaid coverage to unauthorized immigrants.
A new report shows that Hispanics, young people, the healthy and the poor — all groups with high rates of uninsurance before the Affordable Care Act — are the most likely to forgo insurance now that the tax penalty for not having it has been eliminated.
The fallout continues from that Texas court decision that ruled Congress’ 2017 elimination of the tax penalty for failing to have insurance rendered the entire Affordable Care Act unconstitutional. Meanwhile, enrollment for 2019 at healthcare.gov was down, but far less than many predicted. KHN’s Julie Rovner, along with panelists Joanne Kenen of Politico, Anna Edney of Bloomberg News and Kimberly Leonard of the Washington Examiner, discuss this, plus the best, most overhyped and nerdiest stories of 2018. Also, Rovner interviews GOP strategist and pollster Frank Luntz.
If you’re among the millions of people expected to forgo health insurance next year when the Affordable Care Act tax penalty goes away, the financial consequences could be dire if you need unexpected medical care.