A recent article by Charles Fiegl reports that U.S. Surgeon General Regina Benjamin has drafted a strategy focused on preventive health care. It is important that Americans stay healthy as we approach 2014, when tens of millions of currently uninsured Americans will gain health insurance.
This was originally posted on AOL News
Before the ink was even dry on the Affordable Care Act, opponents of reform have been working overtime, doing anything and everything they can to repeal health reform - and the vital consumer protections that are included in the law.
For anti-health care Republicans, "repeal" might make for good political fodder, but for the rest of us, it comes with serious consequences.
We’ve got some good news, and we’ve got some bad news. The good news is that CMS reports that health care spending in 2009 grew by the slowest rate in the last 50 years. The bad news is that this statistic actually means that Americans need help when it comes to health care.
The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) was created in 1974 by the passage of the Congressional Budget and Impoundment Control Act. Its purpose is to provide the Congress with “objective, nonpartisan, and timely analysis to aid in economic and budgetary decisions.” I just want this to be clear. The CBO has been doing its job as a part of the law-making process for over 45 years, so ignoring their analysis seems a little ridiculous right?
Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell has been an outspoken opponent against the Affordable Care Act. Unfortunately for him, the Virginia Health Reform Initiative (VHRI) Advisory Council—a council that he formed—released a report finding that the Affordable Care Act will greatly benefit Virginia’s families.
According to the Census Bureau, 15.1 percent of Americans were living in poverty in 2010. That’s 46.2 million of us. But when the Census Bureau determines whether or not a family or individual is living in poverty, it uses a measure that hasn’t substantially changed since the 1960s. This measure ignores some important factors that affect a family’s finances during the year, such as the high cost of health care.
The U.S. Census Bureau’s current measure
For Medicare beneficiaries, there was a host of good news from the federal government last week.
According to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), premiums for prescription drug coverage will not rise in 2012, more seniors are now receiving preventive care thanks to the Affordable Care Act, and beneficiaries who have reached the doughnut hole are receiving a 50% discount on prescription drugs.
Last week, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced awards of $95 million to 278 school-based health centers across the country.
HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, along with Education Secretary Arne Duncan, made the announcement, with Secretary of Education Duncan noting:
Historically, young adults have been among the most likely to go without health insurance in the country. An astounding 13.7 million people between the ages of 19 and 29 were uninsured in 2008. Many lost coverage when they aged out of Medicaid or CHIP at the age of 19, and many more could not remain on their parent’s plan after they graduated from high school or college.
The Affordable Care Act includes considerable funding to enable real people to improve the health of their communities—and the deadline to apply is just around the corner. The Affordable Care Act set aside more than $100 million in Community Transformation Grants that are now available for states, local governments, tribes, territories, and nonprofits to create or enhance projects that will, in HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius’s words, “empower local communities with resources, information, and flexibility to help make their residents healthier.”