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Covered CA Board Meeting November 19, 2015: Highlights for Consumer Advocates

This week’s Covered California Board meeting, the last for 2015, focused on the Covered CA bus tour and related OE3 campaigns; early results from Open Enrollment 3 or OE3; how the Section 1332 waiver (an option within the Affordable Care Act to waive certain ACA provisions to demonstrate a new principle or model at the […]

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Q & A with the California Office of the Patient Advocate OPA: 2015-16 Report Cards Release

Background Last week the California Office of the Patient Advocate released the newest edition of its 2015/16 Quality Report Cards. The Report Cards provide a tool to assist Californians in comparing quality scores for health plans and medical groups in order to make fully informed health care decisions based on the latest quality data and not […]

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Covered California Board Meeting: Highlights from August 20, 2015

This Covered California board meeting featured a discussion of a vision benefit proposal and agents’ payments and responsibilities, both for action next month; the release of rates for 2016, an update on the redesigned navigator program; and a hearty welcome to new Board member and former Senator and Democratic Party Chair Art Torres (see his […]

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Health Reform 2.0: New Efforts on Value-Based Health Care

Health Access, California Pan-Ethnic Health Network (CPEHN), and Consumers Union and other groups are teaming up to improve health and health equity for California consumers through transparency, benefit design, and Medi-Cal reforms. Through our new Value-Based Health Care initiative, supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and working with the national group Community Catalyst, Health Access and CPEHN […]

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Legislative Recap at Halfway Point: Key Bills Pass Floor Votes

In this article… SB 4 Would Take Historic Steps to Cover Remaining Uninsured Patient Protection Bills to Limit Out-of-Pocket Costs Other bills on transparency, Medi-Cal, and more This blog entry was written by Sawait Hezchias-Seyoum, Health Care Policy Advocate, Health Access. The Senate and Assembly adjourned yesterday, one day ahead of the June 5th deadline to […]

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Legislative Re-Cap: After the First Deadline…

Last Friday was the deadline for all policy committees in the California legislature to hear and report on all bills with fiscal implications–and the good news is that many key bills of interest to health care consumers have passed their first critical hearing. While some bills stalled (including almost all of those Health Access opposed but […]

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Consumer Protection Bills Move Forward, Mixed News on Transparency

Good news (mostly) for California’s health care consumers and for efforts to improve on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) out of the California Assembly Committee on Health yesterday. The Committee passed two bills designed to extend cost sharing protections to consumers in circumstances not addressed by the ACA. AB339 (Gordon), a Health Access-sponsored bill, protects […]

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Health Committees Vote….

This week we had key policy committee hearings, in advance of the end-of-the-month deadlines to pass bills. Yesterday, in the California Assembly Health Committee, numerous key bills advanced. Surprise Bills: Our sponsored legislation, AB533(Bonta) passed on a 17-0 vote, to prevent consumers from getting out-of-network bills when going to a in-network hospital or facility. Even […]

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Covered California Board Meeting April 16, 2015: Highlights

The Covered California board met on April 16, the first meeting for new board members Marty Morgenstern and Genoveva Islas.  Meeting materials for the April 16 meeting are available here: http://board.coveredca.com/meetings/2015/4-15/index.html Cost Sharing on Specialty Prescription Drugs The most contentious issue at the Covered California board meeting was the one that was postponed, on how to design […]

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Highlights from Covered CA Board Meeting December 15, 2014

Today’s tight two-hour meeting featured a much anticipated presentation on benefit designs for 2016, an enrollment update, and a surprise announcement: that this meeting would be California Endowment Chief Executive Dr. Bob Ross’s last as a member of the Covered California Board. Dr. Ross’s’ valuable contributions to the Board’s discussions since he was appointed by […]

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