Oklahoma doctor making a run around Obamacare

By   /  August 26, 2014  /  Health Care, National, News, Oklahoma  /  No Comments

 
 
By Shalva Ginsparg | Watchdog.org
About a year before the birth of Obamacare, Dr. Keith Smith, director of the Surgery Center of Oklahoma, posted all the prices for his center’s surgeries online.
Today, he’s in expansion mode, looking to build two more operating rooms. His fastest-growing group of patients? Obamacare enrollees.
Though armed with Obamacare health insurance plans, [...]

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Vermont navigators cleaning up CGI’s mess until money runs out

By   /  August 22, 2014  /  Health Care, News, Vermont  /  No Comments

Photo courtesy of Department of Vermont Health Access

Vermont Health Connect navigators have rescued thousands of Vermonters trapped in the state’s broken health exchange program. Unfortunately, this army of tireless Obamacare workers and volunteers won’t be much help once federal money runs out at the end of the year.

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Green energy upgrades slow going at Minnesota VA

By   /  August 13, 2014  /  Energy and Environment, Federal Government, Health Care, Minnesota, News  /  No Comments

YEARS IN THE MAKING: Renewable energy upgrades including 90 miles of underground geothermal pipes are running more than a year behind schedule at the St. Cloud VA Medical Center. Photo: VA.

The St. Cloud VA Medical Center also faces an issue with waiting, but much different from the delays that led to a national scandal over treatment at other Veterans Affairs hospitals.

The wait at this central Minnesota facility involves wrapping up some $17 million in renewable energy projects undertaken since 2010 in pursuit of the VA’s alternative energy and efficiency goals.

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As Armstrong heads to NM Legislature, conflict-of-interest questions arise

By   /  August 12, 2014  /  Health Care, Legislature, New Mexico, New Mexico Watchdog, News, Obamacare, State Politics  /  No Comments

CONFLICT OF INTEREST?: Debbie Armstrong runs the day-to-day operations of New Mexico's high-risk insurance pool. She's also about to become a member of the state legislature.

Debbie Armstrong is heading the New Mexico Legislature but her role as manager of the state’s high-risk insurance pool has raised questions.

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Gallup poll: In VA, Obamacare does nothing to help uninsured rate

By   /  August 8, 2014  /  Health Care, News, State Government, Virginia  /  No Comments

EXCHANGE RATES: Premium costs for ACA-compliant plans will increase by double-digits next year.

When President Obama’s signature Affordable Care Act was introduced in 2009, supporters touted it as a surefire way to reduce the number of uninsured Americans. But, so far in the Old Dominion, that hasn’t held true — at least, not according to a new Gallup poll. Virginia is one of only three states where the percentage of uninsured people has actually crept upwards, rather than dropped, according to the poll.

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End of some fair-share fees drains millions from union coffers

By   /  August 8, 2014  /  Abuse of power, California, Connecticut, Health Care, Illinois, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, News, Oregon, State Government, Supreme Court, unions, Washington  /  No Comments

THE FAIR THING TO DO: Unions in several states are notifying home and child care providers they will no longer charge fair-share fees for non-members.

A weeks-old Supreme Court decision freeing home-based care providers from paying union fair-share fees could cost two major unions tens of millions of dollars annually.

Notices going out in several affected states paint a grim picture for the coffers of Service Employees International Union and American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees.

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