Comparison shopping for a health plan

By Wendell Potter

California makes it easy to do your homework.

Excerpts from this story referencing "San Diego":

"… were followed by Blue Shield of California, Sharp Health Plan (in greater San Diego), and Western Health Advantage (in the Sacramento area). All of those plan …"

New types of health care delivery are improving the 'patient experience'

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: eliminating role of insurers could improve health care delivery.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Health":

"… s in It for Me? What Everyone Needs to Know About the Affordable Care Act. …"

"… fact, in some ways they have been part of the problem. Providence-Swedish Health Alliance, a not-for-profit, hospital-based accountable care organization ( …"

"… he Health insurance market are hiring companies like Chicago-based Valence Health, a fast-growing firm that offers services ranging from claims adjudication …"

"… in: An Insurance Company Insider Speaks Out on How Corporate PR is Killing Health Care and Deceiving Americans and Obamacare: What’s in It for M …"

Health insurers turning into who knows what?

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: health insurers are transforming themselves — but into what?

Excerpts from this story referencing "United States":

"… roup’s website, it is “the most diversified health care company in the United States and a leader worldwide in helping people live healthier lives…” WellP …"

"… ida. We’re here to be the best health solutions company in the United States.” What all of those companies’ executives understand is that if profi …"

Taking insurance companies out of health care

By Wendell Potter

If Boeing experiment flies, health care system could be transformed.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Health":

"… lth system,” Dr. Elliott Fisher, director of the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice, was quoted as telling The Seattle Times. “ …"

"… Health insurers are quickly diversifying. Just two weeks ago, Modern Healthcare noted that because Health insurers are now required to spend at l …"

"… expect to realize higher returns. The magazine cited as an example UnitedHealth Group’s Optum division, which works in technology and population Health …"

"… th in operating earnings. Meanwhile, in its core insurance business, UnitedHealth saw its 2013 operating margin decline to 6.4 percent, down from 7.6 percen …"

Defeat of California initiative would protect insurers' profits

By Wendell Potter

Proposition 45 would allow California's insurance chief to block insurance rate hikes; insurers are spending millions to kill it.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Health":

"… millions of dollars to an organization called Californians Against Higher Health Care Costs. If you think the companies’ CEOs opened their personal check …"

"… that are paying for the propaganda campaign. Californians Against Higher Health Care Costs (CAHHCC) is not a grassroots, consumer-led organization as the …"

"… the state: Anthem/WellPoint; Blue Shield of California; Kaiser Foundation Health Plan; Health Net; and UnitedHealthcare. Of $37.9 million donated to CAHHC …"

"… nthem/WellPoint; Blue Shield of California; Kaiser Foundation Health Plan; Health Net; and UnitedHealthcare. Of $37.9 million donated to CAHHCC as of Augus …"

Obamacare-driven competition lowering rates in some states

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: much-maligned Affordable Care Act attracting for-profit insurers, driving prices down in some states.

Attack ads may actually be benefiting Obamacare enrollment

By Wendell Potter

Publicity from attacks may actually help hike enrollment.

Excerpts from this story referencing "health":

"… , crazy as it sounds, those ads may have contributed to the success of the health care legislation this year. The Obama administration had hoped that at le …"

"… even million Americans would sign up for coverage on the federal and state health insurance exchanges during the six-and-a half-month enrollment period that …"

"… ative ads people were exposed to, the more likely they were to enroll in a health plan. It seems that P.T. Barnum’s maxim — “I don’t care what they …"

"… uld change, of course. Obamacare likely will be back in the headlines when health insurers announce their rates for 2015 a few weeks before the November ele …"

Insurers following 'the playbook' in opposing California ballot initiative

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: multi-faceted effort to defeat California ballot initiative.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Medicare":

"… upt the most comprehensive health reform undertaken since the enactment of Medicare and Medicaid, almost a half-century ago.” In other words, it might “un …"

What's the point, WellPoint?

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: insurer's talk of rate increases may boomerang.

Excerpts from this story referencing "insurance":

"… its later this year, that initiative just might pass. …"

"… hat, there will “undoubtedly be remarkable price increases” for health insurance sold through the Obamacare-created exchanges, I remembered the outrage his …"

"… are Act, which contained numerous consumer protections and regulations the insurance industry hated. Just before news of WellPoint’s proposed rate increase …"

"… proposal "reminds us that too many Americans can be left with unaffordable insurance each time the rates or rules change in the private market.” The propose …"

The health care industry's campaign of fear, uncertainty and doubt

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: health insurers use a host of tactics to erode support for Obamacare.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Insurance":

"… re representatives of the industry’s big trade group, America’s Health Insurance Plans, and one of its PR firms, APCO Worldwide. The AHIP and APCO staffers …"

New Fed study says health reform can reduce financial stress

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: Massachusetts law eases financial stress.

Sorting out why insurers cancel policies

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: blaming Obamacare masks real motives.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Cigna":

"… her euphemism, by the way.   I myself — and thousands of my fellow Cigna employees — were notified several years ago, long before I left my job, …"

"… g discontinued. Yep, we got notices in the mail. If we wanted to stay in a Cigna-subsidized health plan, we would have to switch to a high-deductible plan. …"

Government needs to fix Obamacare glitches — fast

By Wendell Potter

COMMENTARY: Government should be more forthcoming about computer glitches in Obamacare.

Excerpts from this story referencing "insurance":

"… er the Obama administration will be able to make the glitch-plagued health insurance exchanges work. I wasn’t at all surprised that people were having a har …"

"… which is the last day of the open enrollment period for individual health insurance policies that go into effect on Jan. 1, 2014. Instead of sitting down wit …"

"… — bronze, silver, gold and platinum — all with varying premiums and coinsurance obligations. Members of Congress who wrote the law fell for the insurance …"

"… oinsurance obligations. Members of Congress who wrote the law fell for the insurance industry’s propaganda that “choice and competition” are what the Ame …"

Opponents' missteps locked in Obamacare's future

By Wendell Potter

COMMENTARY: Republicans overplayed their hand, just as WellPoint did in 2010.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Nancy Pelosi":

"… reform. Enough of them came back into the fold to enable then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to get the legislation through both …"

OPINION: a brave new world for health insurance

By Wendell Potter

ObamaCare's exchanges are attracting innovators, not old-line companies.

Excerpts from this story referencing "federal government":

"… icies with more affordable premiums than we’ve seen in the past. And the federal government will provide subsidies to millions of Americans to help them pay their pre …"

OPINION: Pro-industry amendments lard up Missouri insurance legislation

By Wendell Potter

OPINION: Simple health insurance bill in Missouri becomes industry dream, consumer nightmare.

Excerpts from this story referencing "insurance":

"… ents added at the last minute that will result in a financial windfall for insurance companies, agents and brokers at the expense of residents. SB 262 would e …"

"… haring be “reasonable” and allow HMOs to impose high deductibles and coinsurance — up to $3,100 for an individual and $6,250 for a family — in addition …"

"… ent of insurance would have to review and approve a new or modified health insurance policy. If the department doesn’t act within 45 days, the policy would b …"

"… n’t act within 45 days, the policy would be deemed approved. Most state insurance departments already are inadequately staffed and resourced. Cutting the re …"

OPINION: smoothing out Medicaid's 'churn'

By Wendell Potter

Proposed legislation would protect folks from briefly losing benefits.

Excerpts from this story referencing "asthma":

"… ant increases in hospitalization  for chronic diseases like diabetes, asthma and mental disorders. “Churning has a pervasive negative impact on heal …"

OPINION: Vermont law illuminates claims statistics

By Wendell Potter

Vermont law illuminates disparities among health insurers

Excerpts from this story referencing "Cigna":

"… health insurers — Blue Cross Blue Shield of Vermont, MVP Health Care and Cigna, the company I used to work for. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Vermont is by …"

"… e based in the Green Mountain State. MVP is headquartered in New York, and Cigna, the for-profit company among the three, is based in Connecticut.  W …"

"… t company, as I did, you would be right. But even I was shocked to see how Cigna compared with its competitors, especially Blue Cross. Of all the claims s …"

"… by health care providers and policyholders, Blue Cross denied 7.6 percent. Cigna denied 21 percent. MVP was in the middle at 15.5 percent. Since Vermont i …"

OPINION: industry pushes high-deductible insurance plans

By Wendell Potter

Employers, insurers see high-deductible health plans as wave of the future.

Excerpts from this story referencing "the University of Michigan":

"… Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. As lead researcher Jeffrey T. Kullgren of the University of Michigan told me, he and his research colleagues wondered if it might be possible t …"

OPINION: the behind-the-scenes battle that could subvert Obamacare

By Wendell Potter

Battle over stop-loss coverage could eliminate consumer protections

Excerpts from this story referencing "health insurance":

"… far from over. …"

"… ther group that purports to represents small businesses, the Stop the HIT (health insurance tax) Coalition. Insurers are using that group as part of its campaign to g …"

Health insurance PACs have love-hate relationship with health care reform

By Reity O'Brien

Health insurance PACs gave generously to reform opponents while supporting the Obama plan.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Law":

"… nuary 2011, Cantor introduced the “Repealing the Job-Killing Health Care Law Act,” the first of 33 repeal efforts that have reached the House floor.T …"

OPINION: ObamaCare's crucial benefits

By Wendell Potter

Health care law will cap out-of-pocket spending

Excerpts from this story referencing "health insurance":

"… won’t find any evidence in the Kaiser Family Foundation’s analysis of health insurance costs that the law has caused premiums to skyrocket, as many of those poli …"

"… ecade were more than wiped out by increases in the cost of health care and health insurance. Kaiser’s annual surveys document that: since 2002, premiums have increa …"

OPINION: The illusory promise of free-market health care miracles

By Wendell Potter

Republicans keep touting free-market health care, but there's no evidence it works.

Excerpts from this story referencing "insurance executives":

"… n just because, well, they can, thanks to the free market.The story quoted insurance executives saying that one of the reasons insurers are raising premiums is because th …"

OPINION: Real-world health insurance math doesn't add up

By Wendell Potter

Grad student had insurance, but had to shame Aetna to get cancer bills covered.

Excerpts from this story referencing "health insurance":

"… what about all the other students, all the other people who can’t draw a health insurance company CEO into a conversation?As mcpeed commented on an ABC online story …"

OPINION: Why insurers want ObamaCare's Medicaid business

By Wendell Potter

Pay no attention to GOP governors; health insurers want that new Medicaid business.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Carl McDonald":

"… to get more business in the public sector. As Citigroup financial analyst Carl McDonald wrote in his report about WellPoint’s proposed acquisition of AmeriGroup …"

Mitt Romney

Governors put off health care questions, for now

By The Associated Press

Concerned about costs, governors put off decisions on health care law until after Election Day

2 paths forward for uninsured, 1 clouded by ruling

By The Associated Press

Court ruling giving states leeway on Medicaid casts uncertainty on new coverage for millions

Excerpts from this story referencing "health insurance":

"… s unclear how many of these low-income people would be able to get private health insurance in states that decide not to expand Medicaid. Even modest copayments may b …"

"… do not qualify for Medicaid today and who cannot afford to pay for private health insurance," said Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va. About 60 percent of the more than 265 …"

"… uninsured more than three years. She lives near Richmond, Va.Going without health insurance has long been seen as a personal issue, a misfortune for many and a choice …"

"… r with a history of medical problems cannot be turned down for coverage by health insurance companies. And federal subsidies will make premiums more affordable.Quinla …"

OPINION: Translating the insurance industry's feel-good rhetoric

By Wendell Potter

Industry rhetoric obscures the real agenda

Excerpts from this story referencing "health insurance":

"… up a few months ago, the one we’re using to try to control how the state health insurance exchanges operate, the ‘Choice and Competition Coalition.’ And instead …"

OPINION: Could nonprofit health insurance plans be the real reformers?

By Wendell Potter

Nonprofit health insurance just might be the sleeper solution in healthcare reform law.

Excerpts from this story referencing "research professor and project director":

"… CO-OPs is Mila Kofman, former insurance commissioner in Maine who is now a research professor and project director at Georgetown University’s Health Policy Institute.“With seed money fr …"

Public offers mixed support for military healthcare changes

By Aaron Mehta

The public supports reducing some military healthcare and personnel expenses, but not others.