Health Reform

Health reform has not played such a dominant role in public debate and policymaking for nearly 20 years. While there is growing agreement that fundamental changes must be made given the growing costs of health care and the toll that takes on individuals and the economy, there is still wide disagreement on what meaningful reform should entail. KHI researchers and journalists monitor and report on health reform efforts at the state and federal levels.

Issue Brief: Insurance Marketplace Now Open—Plan and Cost Options for Kansans

0 | Health Reform

After more than three years of preparation and debate, the health insurance marketplace created by the Affordable Care Act opened this week in Kansas for enrollment in coverage starting as early as Jan. 1. While the initial rollout is likely to experience technical challenges and limited online functionality, the plans available and the prices for coverage in the marketplace are described in this brief.

Policy and Research

Fact Sheet: 57,013 Kansans Signed Up for Health Coverage in ACA’s First Year

0 | Oct. 21, 2014 | Health Reform

As the second open enrollment period approaches for the health insurance marketplaces created through the Affordable Care Act, the Kansas Health Institute has developed a fact sheet providing a look back at enrollment results from the first year.

Issue Brief: Health Reform Likely to Increase Demand on Mental Health System

1 | May. 30, 2014 | Research, Health Insurance, Health Reform, Press Releases

Recently released federal data show the Kansas mental health system could expect up to 7,700 new patients due to expansion of insurance coverage under ObamaCare. This influx of patients could create strain on the mental health system in some Kansas communities.

Kansas Health Insurance Marketplace: An Insider's Look

0 | Feb. 21, 2014 | Health Insurance, Health Reform

Join us in a discussion of early experiences with implementation of the ACA in Kansas The Marketplace and how it is structured and operating in Kansas.

Issue Brief: Nearly 182,000 Kansans in the ‘Eligibility Gap’

0 | Feb. 11, 2014 | Health Reform, Medicaid-CHIP

The Affordable Care Act of 2010 aims to increase the number of people with health insurance by expanding both private and public coverage. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimates the law will reduce the number of uninsured Americans under age 65 by approximately 27 million by the year 2017. However, in Kansas, approximately 182,000 people fall into an eligibility gap, and 78,400 of them currently do not have health insurance. Nearly half of Kansans in the gap are also employed.

Video: KHI's St. Peter on the economic outlook for the healthcare industry

0 | Dec. 05, 2013 | Health Reform

The Center for Economic Development and Business Research at Wichita State University invited Robert St. Peter — president and CEO of the Kansas Health Institute — to present at its annual conference on the economic outlook for the healthcare industry.

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News

ACA gets mixed reviews at economic conference

0 | Oct. 24, 2014 | Health Reform, Insurance, Medicaid-CHIP

Less than a year after the first plans were sold in the Obamacare marketplace, it’s clear that the law’s impact on consumers, providers and employers has been mixed. But it’s also clear that it’s too soon to fully gauge its impact.

Legislator seeking to lead health committee open to Medicaid expansion discussion

0 | Oct. 21, 2014 | Legislature, Health Reform, Medicaid-CHIP

Rep. Susan Concannon, a Beloit Republican and vice chair of the health committee, says expanding Medicaid eligibility in Kansas is "something we should look at."

Administration signals doubts about calculator permitting plans without hospital benefits

0 | Oct. 16, 2014 | Health Reform, Insurance

Treasury Department officials are preparing to reverse course on an official calculator that permits plans without hospital coverage to pass the health law’s strictest standard for large employers.

Economic policy conference to focus on health reform law

0 | Oct. 14, 2014 | Health Reform

"The Affordable Care Act in Kansas: Impacts on People, Business and Providers" will be the topic of this year’s Kansas Economic Policy Conference on Thursday, Oct. 23, at the Kansas Union.

Survey: Many states boost Medicaid benefits as economy improves

0 | Oct. 14, 2014 | Health Reform, Medicaid-CHIP

A report found that 22 states were expanding Medicaid benefits compared to just two states restricting them in fiscal 2015. That’s the fewest states cutting or restricting benefits in at least nine years.

KanCare initiative concerns parents of developmentally disabled adults

3 | Oct. 20, 2014 | KDADS, KanCare

A health home initiative announced by KDADS encourages but does not require KanCare companies to let developmentally disabled Kansans keep their current case managers if they so choose.

Few adults taking advantage of new KanCare dental coverage

0 | Oct. 24, 2014 | KanCare, Oral Health

When the state handed over administration of Medicaid to three managed care companies, the companies granted basic dental services to more than 130,000 adults who hadn't previously had it under Medicaid. But relatively few of those adults took advantage of it in KanCare's first year.

KDHE releases updated health risk data

0 | Oct. 22, 2014 | Community Health, KDHE

For the 2013 Kansas Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System survey, KDHE workers conducted telephone interviews with 20,000 randomly selected adults throughout Kansas

Doctor running for lieutenant governor swears by 'direct primary care' model

1 | Sep. 08, 2014 | Campaign 2014, Health Care Delivery

Josh Umbehr, a primary care physician running for the state's second-highest office, says his updated version of concierge medical practice brings better, more affordable care to the masses.

Sidelined player steps up game in concussion awareness effort

0 | Oct. 24, 2014 | Advocacy

A University of Kansas freshman is working to support awareness of and research into post-concussion syndrome by forming the nonprofit HeadsUp Foundation for PCS.

Kansas AG joins brief challenging federal health reform

0 | Jun. 06, 2011 | Health Reform

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt has joined with 13 other state attorneys general in a brief challenging the federal health reform law.

Eating disorders and insurance: A fraught combination

1 | Oct. 22, 2014 | Health Care Delivery, Hospitals

In survey results released last year, the National Eating Disorder Association reported that costs and insurance limitations as the biggest barriers to treatment of eating disorders.

KanCare initiative concerns parents of developmentally disabled adults

3 | Oct. 20, 2014 | KDADS, KanCare

A health home initiative announced by KDADS encourages but does not require KanCare companies to let developmentally disabled Kansans keep their current case managers if they so choose.

Davis vows to reverse controversial KanCare decision if elected

6 | Oct. 08, 2014 | Campaign 2014, KanCare

The Democratic candidate for governor says support services to Kansans with developmental disabilities should not be part of the state's privatized Medicaid program.

Kansas mental health system under increasing stress

16 | Aug. 18, 2014 | Mental Health

Directors at many of the 26 community mental health centers in Kansas say the system is breaking down because state funding hasn’t kept pace with the increasing demands for care in their communities.

State losing ground in efforts to help disabled land jobs

2 | Oct. 07, 2014 | DCF

State officials say their goal is to help 2,000 Kansans with disabilities find “integrated employment,” meaning competitive jobs rather than so-called “sheltered employment.”

State scrutiny of Early Head Start programs prompts questions

1 | Oct. 13, 2014 | Early Childhood, DCF

A Wichita-based Early Head Start program has opted to go without nearly $1 million in funding because of difficulties dealing with a state agency.

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