Medicaid http://kuer.org en U Study Shows Medicaid Expansion Population is Bigger than Previously Estimated http://kuer.org/post/u-study-shows-medicaid-expansion-population-bigger-previously-estimated <p></p><p>Utah lawmakers were stunned to hear Thursday that the number of people who fall in the so-called health coverage gap is significantly higher than they thought. Researchers from the University of Utah presented <a href="http://le.utah.gov/interim/2014/pdf/00003826.pdf">results from a new report</a> on the Medicaid eligibility expansion population&nbsp;to a state health committee.</p> Thu, 17 Jul 2014 23:15:21 +0000 Andrea Smardon 49448 at http://kuer.org U Study Shows Medicaid Expansion Population is Bigger than Previously Estimated Health Advocates Stage Limbo Contest at Lockhart’s Office http://kuer.org/post/health-advocates-stage-limbo-contest-lockhart-s-office <p></p><p>Wearing fake grass skirts and plastic leis, health advocates took turns going under a limbo pole in front of House Speaker Rebecca Lockhart’s office Wednesday. The idea was to highlight the plight of Utahns who fall into the Medicaid coverage gap, and the pole was steadily lowered to represent each month this year that they have not been able to pay for healthcare. The mood was light, but Christine Stenquist quickly became emotional when she began talking about why she is taking part in this demonstration.</p> Wed, 16 Jul 2014 22:10:40 +0000 Andrea Smardon 49385 at http://kuer.org Health Advocates Stage Limbo Contest at Lockhart’s Office Salt Lake County Medicaid Argument Doesn’t Sway Republican Lawmaker http://kuer.org/post/salt-lake-county-medicaid-argument-doesn-t-sway-republican-lawmaker <p></p><p>The Salt Lake County Council is sending a letter this week to the Utah legislature asking them to support the Governor’s Healthy Utah Plan and accept Medicaid funds. County councilors have said those federal funds could offset a 12 percent budget shortfall for behavioral health services expected next year. But so far, state lawmakers are holding firm in their positions on Medicaid.</p> Thu, 12 Jun 2014 22:51:24 +0000 Andrea Smardon 47722 at http://kuer.org Salt Lake County Medicaid Argument Doesn’t Sway Republican Lawmaker Salt Lake County to Cut Services if State Doesn’t Accept Medicaid Funds http://kuer.org/post/salt-lake-county-cut-services-if-state-doesn-t-accept-medicaid-funds <p></p><p>Salt Lake County faces a budget shortfall and service cuts if the state doesn’t accept Medicaid funds from the federal government. The County Council will draft a letter at their meeting Tuesday urging state lawmakers to support the Governor’s Healthy Utah Plan, and to do it this summer before the County has to complete its budget.&nbsp;</p><p>Democratic Salt Lake County Councilor Sam Granato was hoping the legislature would have made a decision by now on whether Utah should accept Medicaid funds to provide health coverage for more than 110,000 low-income Utahns.</p> Mon, 09 Jun 2014 22:30:24 +0000 Andrea Smardon 47541 at http://kuer.org Salt Lake County to Cut Services if State Doesn’t Accept Medicaid Funds Most Utahns in Health “Coverage Gap” are Working http://kuer.org/post/most-utahns-health-coverage-gap-are-working <p></p><p>Utah Governor Gary Herbert announced this week that he’s made good progress negotiating with the federal government on his alternative to Medicaid expansion. The governor says there are still some sticking points in the negotiations – including work requirements for those receiving government assistance. But a new study shows that many of those citizens are already working.</p> Fri, 23 May 2014 22:03:07 +0000 Andrea Smardon 46781 at http://kuer.org Most Utahns in Health “Coverage Gap” are Working Utah Lawmakers Put Off Healthcare Decisions for Low Income Citizens http://kuer.org/post/utah-lawmakers-put-healthcare-decisions-low-income-citizens <p></p><p>Utah’s Republican lawmakers say they’re not ready to make any decisions about Medicaid expansion or <a href="http://www.utah.gov/governor/news_media/article.html?article=9747">the governor’s alternative plan</a>. That means over 110,000 low income Utahns will likely be waiting at least until next year before they know what their health insurance options may be.</p><p>At a GOP caucus this week, Republicans legislators determined that they don’t all agree when it comes to Medicaid and healthcare reform.</p> Fri, 23 May 2014 03:56:28 +0000 Andrea Smardon 46729 at http://kuer.org Utah Lawmakers Put Off Healthcare Decisions for Low Income Citizens Health Care Scorecard: Utah Among Worst for Access and Affordability http://kuer.org/post/health-care-scorecard-utah-among-worst-access-and-affordability <p></p><p>A new report shows Utah ranks among the worst states in the nation for access and affordability to health care.&nbsp;The Commonwealth Fund, a non-profit, non-partisan organization based in Washington, DC, released its <a href="http://www.commonwealthfund.org/Publications/Fund-Reports/2014/Apr/2014-State-Scorecard.aspx">Scorecard on State Health System Performance</a> this week.</p> Thu, 01 May 2014 23:08:35 +0000 Andrea Smardon 45719 at http://kuer.org Health Care Scorecard: Utah Among Worst for Access and Affordability Governor's Healthy Utah Plan "Well Received" in Washington D.C. http://kuer.org/post/governors-healthy-utah-plan-well-received-washington-dc <p>Governor Gary Herbert says Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and top officials at the White House were very receptive to his plan to help cover uninsured Utahns.</p><p>After his visit to Washington D.C. earlier in the week Governor Herbert says he’s confident that Secretary Sebelius will approve his Healthy Utah plan.</p><p>“As she said to me, I see nothing in your proposal, Governor, that would be a deal breaker.”</p> Wed, 16 Apr 2014 19:53:29 +0000 Brian Grimmett 44941 at http://kuer.org Governor's Healthy Utah Plan "Well Received" in Washington D.C. Governor Meets with HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius http://kuer.org/post/governor-meets-hhs-secretary-kathleen-sebelius <p>Governor Gary Herbert is in Washington D.C. Monday meeting with outgoing Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius about his plan to help low income Utahns get health insurance.</p> Mon, 14 Apr 2014 20:27:52 +0000 Brian Grimmett 44841 at http://kuer.org Governor Meets with HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius Herbert: Delay Hasn't Hurt Medicaid Alternative http://kuer.org/post/herbert-delay-hasnt-hurt-medicaid-alternative <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>Governor Gary Herbert says he doesn’t think Utah’s long delay in coming up with an alternative to expanding Medicaid has hurt the prospect of a successful program.</p> Thu, 27 Mar 2014 19:22:53 +0000 Dan Bammes 44011 at http://kuer.org Herbert: Delay Hasn't Hurt Medicaid Alternative Session Ends with No Medicaid Decision, Talks Continue http://kuer.org/post/session-ends-no-medicaid-decision-talks-continue <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Another Utah legislative session has ended without a decision on Medicaid, but Governor Gary Herbert and healthcare advocates are declaring a victory of sorts.</span></p> Fri, 14 Mar 2014 06:29:36 +0000 Andrea Smardon 43368 at http://kuer.org Session Ends with No Medicaid Decision, Talks Continue Gov. on Healthcare Negotiations: “You Don’t Want to Tie My Hands” http://kuer.org/post/gov-healthcare-negotiations-you-don-t-want-tie-my-hands <p></p><p>Time is running out for the Utah legislature to make a decision on what they want to do about health insurance for low-income Utahns.&nbsp; There are several health reform proposals in the legislature that have yet to be approved, with only four working days left in the session. But at this point, the governor has the power to move forward with his plan, so long as lawmakers don’t stand in his way.</p> Sun, 09 Mar 2014 17:26:00 +0000 Andrea Smardon 43077 at http://kuer.org Gov. on Healthcare Negotiations: “You Don’t Want to Tie My Hands” Utahns in the Coverage Gap Find Hope in Governor Herbert’s Health Plan http://kuer.org/post/utahns-coverage-gap-find-hope-governor-herbert-s-health-plan <p></p><p>Governor Gary Herbert got some positive feedback Thursday on his plan to offer health insurance to low-income Utahns. Herbert visited a homeless health clinic in Salt Lake City and heard from citizens who do not qualify for insurance subsidies, but also do not qualify for Medicaid, leaving them in a coverage gap.</p> Fri, 07 Mar 2014 01:23:57 +0000 Andrea Smardon 43032 at http://kuer.org Utahns in the Coverage Gap Find Hope in Governor Herbert’s Health Plan House Speaker Criticizes Governor’s Health Plan, calls it Obamacare Expansion http://kuer.org/post/house-speaker-criticizes-governor-s-health-plan-calls-it-obamacare-expansion <p></p><p>When Governor Gary Herbert laid out his Healthy Utah plan Thursday he said he was confident that it would get support from the state legislature as well as the federal government.&nbsp; But the governor’s proposal to accept federal money to help low-income Utahns buy health insurance may meet some resistance from Republicans in the state House…. especially the House speaker.</p> Fri, 28 Feb 2014 23:00:57 +0000 Andrea Smardon 42790 at http://kuer.org House Speaker Criticizes Governor’s Health Plan, calls it Obamacare Expansion Governor Herbert's Health Plan: Take Federal Money, Don’t Expand Medicaid http://kuer.org/post/governor-herberts-health-plan-take-federal-money-don-t-expand-medicaid <p>Governor Gary Herbert announced his long-awaited plan Thursday concerning Medicaid and health coverage for the poorest Utahns. He’s calling it Healthy Utah.</p><p>The Supreme Court decided in 2012 to let states choose whether to expand Medicaid as it was intended under the Affordable Care Act. Now, more than a year and a half later, after reviewing proposals from the state house, the senate, and panels of stakeholders, Governor Herbert finally revealed <em>his </em>plan.</p> Fri, 28 Feb 2014 00:02:41 +0000 Andrea Smardon 42749 at http://kuer.org Governor Herbert's Health Plan: Take Federal Money, Don’t Expand Medicaid Senate Republicans Consider Partial Medicaid Expansion http://kuer.org/post/senate-republicans-consider-partial-medicaid-expansion <p></p><p>A Republican state senator has put forth a proposal for a partial expansion of Medicaid in Utah. Senate majority leaders say they are meeting Wednesday night to decide whether they will get behind this proposal, a different House plan that rejects Medicaid dollars, or another solution all together.&nbsp;</p><p>Republican Senator Brian Shiozawa is an Emergency Room doctor. So he’s all too familiar with the coverage gap - those 54,000 Utahns who live in poverty and can’t get health insurance.</p> Wed, 26 Feb 2014 23:29:07 +0000 Andrea Smardon 42700 at http://kuer.org Senate Republicans Consider Partial Medicaid Expansion No Money in State Budget to Fund GOP Alternative to Medicaid Expansion http://kuer.org/post/no-money-state-budget-fund-gop-alternative-medicaid-expansion <p></p><p>A Republican proposal to provide health coverage for those under the poverty line has advanced to the House floor for consideration, but lawmakers in charge of the budget say there is no money for it at this point, and time is running out to accept any new requests.</p> Tue, 25 Feb 2014 23:53:25 +0000 Andrea Smardon & Brian Grimmett 42647 at http://kuer.org No Money in State Budget to Fund GOP Alternative to Medicaid Expansion Salt Lake City Man in Recovery from Heroin Addiction Falls in Coverage Gap http://kuer.org/post/salt-lake-city-man-recovery-heroin-addiction-falls-coverage-gap <p></p> Thu, 20 Feb 2014 06:54:03 +0000 Andrea Smardon 42381 at http://kuer.org Salt Lake City Man in Recovery from Heroin Addiction Falls in Coverage Gap House Republicans Work to Close “Coverage Gap” Without Expanding Medicaid http://kuer.org/post/house-republicans-work-close-coverage-gap-without-expanding-medicaid <p></p><p>Republican state lawmakers have come up with a proposal to provide health insurance for those who fall below the poverty line, but it does not expand Medicaid in the state. Democrats say rejecting those federal dollars is irresponsible.</p> Thu, 20 Feb 2014 06:36:09 +0000 Andrea Smardon 42380 at http://kuer.org House Republicans Work to Close “Coverage Gap” Without Expanding Medicaid The Coverage Gap: Transgender Utahn Can’t Get Health Insurance http://kuer.org/post/coverage-gap-transgender-utahn-can-t-get-health-insurance <p></p><p>The Affordable Care Act is in effect across the country, but some Utahns are finding that they still don’t have any options for health insurance. As part of an ongoing series, KUER looks at those find themselves in this coverage gap. In today’s installment, we meet a 32-year-old who is in the process of coming out as transgender.</p> Thu, 13 Feb 2014 01:57:00 +0000 Andrea Smardon 42081 at http://kuer.org The Coverage Gap: Transgender Utahn Can’t Get Health Insurance The Coverage Gap: Transgender Utahn Can’t Get Health Insurance http://kuer.org/post/coverage-gap-transgender-utahn-can-t-get-health-insurance-0 <p></p><p>The Affordable Care Act is in effect across the country, but some Utahns are finding that they still don’t have any options for health insurance. As part of an ongoing series, KUER looks at those in this coverage gap. In today’s installment, we meet a 32-year-old who is in the process of coming out as transgender.</p> Thu, 13 Feb 2014 01:57:00 +0000 Andrea Smardon 42082 at http://kuer.org The Coverage Gap: Transgender Utahn Can’t Get Health Insurance Utah Gets Visit from Federal Healthcare Officials http://kuer.org/post/utah-gets-visit-federal-healthcare-officials <p></p><p>Officials from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) are in Utah this week on a two-day trip to talk with state lawmakers and advocates. The visit was ostensibly a chance for Utahns to meet the new regional director, but healthcare advocates say they also got a pep talk to sign more people up for insurance, and to continue pushing for a Medicaid expansion in the state.&nbsp;</p> Thu, 06 Feb 2014 00:50:32 +0000 Andrea Smardon 41759 at http://kuer.org Utah Gets Visit from Federal Healthcare Officials House Republicans Working on “Utah Solution” for Poor, Uninsured http://kuer.org/post/house-republicans-working-utah-solution-poor-uninsured <p></p><p>Governor Gary Herbert said this week that the state has a moral obligation to provide some type of health coverage for those living in poverty. House Speaker Rebecca Lockhart says she doesn’t want to accept any federal dollars to do that. Now Republican House lawmakers are working to find a solution that will solve the so-called Medicaid gap, but will also be politically acceptable to those in their own party.</p> Fri, 31 Jan 2014 22:22:30 +0000 Andrea Smardon 41546 at http://kuer.org House Republicans Working on “Utah Solution” for Poor, Uninsured Utah House Speaker Challenges Governor Herbert http://kuer.org/post/utah-house-speaker-challenges-governor-herbert <p></p><p>The Utah House of Representatives opened this year’s legislative session with some bold remarks from Republican Speaker Rebecca Lockhart, challenging Governor Gary Herbert.</p><p>Just like speeches from years’ past, Speaker Lockhart railed against the over-reach of the federal government, and insisted that Utah resist. But this time, she targeted Governor Herbert who has recently said that he favors some limited expansion of Medicaid in the state.</p> Mon, 27 Jan 2014 23:01:39 +0000 Andrea Smardon 41346 at http://kuer.org Utah House Speaker Challenges Governor Herbert Herbert Says Doing Nothing on Medicaid Expansion is Not an Option http://kuer.org/post/herbert-says-doing-nothing-medicaid-expansion-not-option <p>Governor Gary Herbert says he’s decided what the state will do about expanding Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. But he’s not ready yet to announce just what that is.</p><p>Herbert told reporters at his monthly news conference on KUED this morning that he’ll announce his decision during the legislative session, which starts next week. But he wouldn’t go into detail about just how the state plans to work with the federal government on Medicaid.</p> Thu, 23 Jan 2014 20:58:03 +0000 Dan Bammes 41164 at http://kuer.org Herbert Says Doing Nothing on Medicaid Expansion is Not an Option After Delay, State Now Processing Medicaid Applications from Healthcare.gov http://kuer.org/post/after-delay-state-now-processing-medicaid-applications-healthcaregov <p></p><p></p><p></p><p>After weeks of waiting, thousands of Utahns will find out if they qualify for Medicaid. Confusion and technical difficulties with the federal exchange website <a href="https://www.healthcare.gov/">healthcare.gov</a> have left some Utahns’ applications in limbo.</p> Sun, 12 Jan 2014 17:18:00 +0000 Andrea Smardon 40670 at http://kuer.org After Delay, State Now Processing Medicaid Applications from Healthcare.gov Utah Awarded 5.4 Million Dollars for Increasing Children’s Health Coverage http://kuer.org/post/utah-awarded-54-million-dollars-increasing-children-s-health-coverage <p></p><p>Utah has been awarded 5.4 million dollars from the federal government for its efforts to get more children covered by health insurance. The performance bonus comes from the Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2009. For the second year in a row, Utah is one of 23 states to receive it. But some advocacy groups say there are still too many uninsured Utah children.</p> Wed, 01 Jan 2014 20:26:57 +0000 Andrea Smardon 40281 at http://kuer.org Utah Awarded 5.4 Million Dollars for Increasing Children’s Health Coverage Utahns on Primary Care Network Won't Lose Insurance Yet http://kuer.org/post/utahns-primary-care-network-wont-lose-insurance-yet <p></p><p>Utahns who receive health insurance through the state’s Primary Care Network will likely have more time before they are cut from the program. PCN was set to expire at the end of this year, but state health officials say they have verbal confirmation from the federal government that the program will be funded for another year.</p> Thu, 19 Dec 2013 22:13:12 +0000 Andrea Smardon 39801 at http://kuer.org Utahns on Primary Care Network Won't Lose Insurance Yet State Hospital Association Endorses "Utah Approach" to Medicaid Expansion http://kuer.org/post/state-hospital-association-endorses-utah-approach-medicaid-expansion <p></p><p>Some of Utah’s healthcare powerbrokers are honing in on a plan to expand Medicaid that they think the state legislature might approve. At a healthcare conference in downtown Salt Lake City Thursday, former lieutenant governor Greg Bell - now president and CEO of the Utah Hospital Association – laid out his vision.</p><p>Bell says the state’s decision on Medicaid expansion will really be decided by the Utah legislature. &nbsp;</p> Fri, 06 Dec 2013 00:06:05 +0000 Andrea Smardon 39157 at http://kuer.org State Hospital Association Endorses "Utah Approach" to Medicaid Expansion State Task Force Narrows Options for Medicaid in Utah http://kuer.org/post/state-task-force-narrows-options-medicaid-utah <p></p><p>A state legislative committee has decided not to consider a full Medicaid expansion as defined by the federal Affordable Care Act. Instead, the Health System Reform Task Force is considering three alternative options.</p> Fri, 22 Nov 2013 00:03:44 +0000 Andrea Smardon 38567 at http://kuer.org State Task Force Narrows Options for Medicaid in Utah