Obamacare | Nashville Public Radio

Obamacare

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Tennesseans may end up paying less for insurance on the Affordable Care Act marketplace this year — that's as average rates went up by as much as 42 percent. Even the people who assist in signups for coverage were surprised by the final costs they're seeing.

Musicians who advocate for health care access played at an enrollment event at the Belcourt on Wednesday. / WPLN

The consultants hired to help Tennesseans sign up for health insurance on the Affordable Care Act marketplace have their work cut out for them. At a kickoff event Wednesday, they were reminded that the White House has cut 90 percent of the advertising budget and shortened the open enrollment period by half.

Daniel Dubois / courtesy Vanderbilt via Flickr

Vanderbilt University Medical Center has cut a deal with Cigna to keep seeing Obamacare patients in Middle Tennessee. The region's largest hospital was just weeks from being out-of-network for Nashville-area residents who buy health insurance on the federal marketplace.

Chas Sisk / WPLN

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam is cheering the latest effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act, while opponents of the measure are scrambling to derail it before the legislation can pass the U.S. Senate.

Haslam joined 14 other Republican governors Wednesday in signing a letter praising a plan to repeal the ACA's individual mandate, to do away with the requirement that individuals purchase insurance and to convert Medicaid to a system of so-called block grants to the states.

In an appearance in Chattanooga, Haslam called the proposal, known as Graham-Cassidy, a "home run for Tennessee" because the state will receive more money than it currently does for Medicaid.

U.S. Senate

Gov. Bill Haslam urged Congress Thursday morning to adopt a short-term fix to health insurance markets while continuing to work on bringing down medical costs over the long haul, as he joined four other governors at a hearing before a Senate committee.

Appearing before the Senate Health, Education, Labor & Pensions Committee, Haslam said Congress has an obligation to pass legislation that would encourage insurers to keep selling plans on exchanges set up through the Affordable Care Act. If not, millions of Americans would lose coverage.

Chas Sisk / WPLN

Vice President Mike Pence touted the strong economy and, despite moves by Congress to turn to other issues, pledged to keep pushing for repeal of the Affordable Care Act in a speech to a record 2,000 people at the Tennessee Republican Party's annual Statesmen's Dinner.

Chas Sisk / WPLN

Political leaders and advocates for the health care industry in Tennessee have begun to turn their attention to the future of Obamacare, after Senate Republicans signaled Tuesday that efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act were likely to fail.

TN Photo Services

Gov. Bill Haslam says he's continuing to keep tabs on the debate in Congress over health care.

He's one of many governors who've said they're concerned about the measures Republicans in the House and Senate are considering to rein in one big part of the health care system — Medicaid. But Haslam worries Congress could eventually pass the tab for covering the poor onto states like Tennessee.

Craig Fitzhugh
Stephen Jerkins / WPLN (File photo)

Tennessee Democrats are hoping to revive the debate over expanding TennCare, the state's Medicaid program.

The move comes after Republicans in Congress failed last week to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.

Scott DesJarlais via Twitter

Tennessee’s lone GOP holdout who maintained he was leaning against voting for the health care bill Friday, says it’s time to work harder to get it right. Congressman Scott DesJarlais, whose district includes Murfreesboro, disliked the Republicans’ bill because he said it didn’t solve enough of the problems of Obamacare.

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