Tony Pugh

GOP lawmakers voice concerns about Obamacare’s fraud protections

With open enrollment for the healthcare overhaul set to begin in less than three months, Obama administration officials faced tough questioning Wednesday from Republican lawmakers about the security of personal health information and the potential for fraud in the new insurance marketplaces. | 07/17/13 18:02:47 By - By Tony Pugh

Q&A: The ins and outs of Obamacare

Q How many companies with more than 50 workers offer health benefits? | 07/03/13 19:52:43 By - By Tony Pugh

Surprise delay in Obamacare will be costly

One day after the Obama administration delayed the Affordable Care Act’s employer mandate until 2015, critics and supporters of the legislation were hotly debating the cost and effects of the surprise move, while business owners breathed a sigh of relief. | 07/03/13 19:51:55 By - By Tony Pugh

Obamacare ‘employer mandate’ delayed until 2015

After months of conferring with fretful employers, the Obama administration announced Tuesday that it will delay enforcement of the Affordable Care Act’s so-called “employer mandate” until 2015. | 07/02/13 20:07:18 By - By Tony Pugh

Wanted: Moms and athletes needed to help sell health care overhaul

The Obama administration continued to implement the national health care overhaul on Monday with the launch of a redesigned consumer information website, a new 24-hour Affordable Care Act hotline and plans to huddle with the National Football League. | 06/24/13 19:19:22 By - By Tony Pugh

Obamacare’s big question: What’s it going to cost me?

The cost of health coverage under Obamacare remains one the biggest mysteries of the nation’s health care overhaul. But nagging cost questions will slowly be answered this summer as insurers and state officials set 2014 health plan rates for people who buy coverage outside of work or purchase it through small employers. | 06/17/13 00:00:00 By - By Tony Pugh

Black family progress has stalled since controversial 1965 study, report says

Many of the same social problems highlighted in a landmark 1965 study on black family structure have only worsened over the last 48 years and are now causing similar hardship for white and Hispanic families. | 06/13/13 00:00:00 By - By Tony Pugh

Report: Medicare’s finances improve, Social Security holding steady

Medicare’s troubled finances got a boost when the annual trustees report showed that the program’s hospital insurance trust fund will remain solvent until 2026, two years longer than was projected last year. Social Security has enough cash to cover benefits until 2033, which is unchanged from last year’s projection. The Obama administration credited Medicare’s improved outlook to lower spending for hospital and skilled nursing care, and lower projected program costs for Medicare Advantage plans, the private plans that provide Medicare benefits. | 05/31/13 16:36:09 By - By Tony Pugh

Minnesota a health haven for seniors, reports says; Mississippi not so much

Minnesota tops the nation as the healthiest state for seniors, while Mississippi is the unhealthiest and faces an uphill battle to improve its low ranking, according to a report Wednesday by the United Health Foundation, a non-profit arm of insurer UnitedHealth Group. | 05/29/13 00:00:00 By - By Tony Pugh

Public in Deep South supports expanding Medicaid, poll finds, but lawmakers don’t

Even though governors and lawmakers in five Deep South states oppose a plan to cover more people through Medicaid under the health care overhaul, 62 percent of the people in Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi and South Carolina support expanding the program, according to a new poll. | 05/21/13 19:08:23 By - By Tony Pugh

Child mental health disorders rising, cost society $247 billion annually

Up to one in five American youngsters – some 7 million to 12 million by one estimate – experience a mental health disorder each year, according to a new report billed as the first comprehensive look at the mental health status of American children. | 05/16/13 18:22:37 By - By Tony Pugh

89 arrested in crackdown by Medicare Fraud Strike Force

Doctors, nurses and other licensed medical professionals were among 89 people recently arrested in nine cities, accused of scheming to defraud the Medicare program of nearly $223 million in false billings, the Obama administration announced Tuesday. | 05/14/13 18:13:21 By - By Tony Pugh

Flawed salt studies shouldn’t alter U.S. dietary guidelines, says new report

While high salt intake increases the risk of heart disease in the general public, a new study says the health effects are less clear when salt consumption actually is reduced to below daily amounts recommended by the government. | 05/14/13 15:03:47 By - By Tony Pugh

Most doctors still reject Medicaid as program expansion nears

Because of the program’s history of low payments, fewer than half of U.S. doctors and other health care professionals accept Medicaid patients, according to a recent study. For those that do, getting an appointment sometimes can take months, particularly among specialists. The lack of doctors is a problem that will only worsen as some 27 million people get health coverage by 2016 as part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. | 05/13/13 16:50:53 By - By Tony Pugh

Federal judge denies FDA effort to block contraceptive access

A New York federal judge on Friday denied a request by the Obama administration to delay his April 5 court order that allows emergency contraceptives to be sold without age limits or a prescription. | 05/10/13 18:30:02 By - By Tony Pugh

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