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  • Uninsured Rate up to 12.3 Percent Amid Obamacare Turmoil Associated Press by Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar — The number of U.S. adults without health insurance is up nearly 3.5 million this year, as rising premiums and political turmoil over "Obamacare" undermine coverage gains that drove the nation's uninsured rate to a historic low. That finding is based on the latest installment of a major survey, released Friday. The Gallup-Sharecare Well-Being Index asks a random sample of 500 people each day whether they have health insurance.  The survey found that the uninsured rate among adults was 12.3 percent during the period from July 1-Sept. 30, an increase of 1.4 percentage points since the end of last year. The increase in the number of uninsured is more striking because it comes at a time of economic growth and low unemployment.

  • Study Finds More Than One-Quarter of U.S. Adults Are Underinsured Because of High Deductibles Northern Kentucky Tribune — More than one-fourth of U.S. adults with health insurance were underinsured in 2016, including 44 percent who got their coverage from the federal marketplace and almost 25 percent who got their coverage from employer plans, according to a recent study. Using data from The Commonwealth Fund’s 2016 Biennial Health Insurance Survey, a report from the fund found that of all working-age adults who had health insurance for a full year in 2016, 28 percent, or about 41 million people, were underinsured.

  • ACA Enrollment Schedule May Lock Millions into Unwanted Health Plans Washington Post by Amy Goldstein — Millions of Americans with insurance through the Affordable Care Act could find themselves locked into health plans they do not want for the coming year because of the Trump administration's schedule for the enrollment season that starts in less than two weeks. The complication arises when people who already have health plans under the law are automatically reenrolled in the same plan. In the past, a few million consumers each year have been auto-enrolled and then were sent government notices encouraging them to check whether they could find better or more affordable coverage. This time, according to a federal document obtained by The Washington Post, the automatic enrollment will take place after it is too late to make any changes. Auto-enrollment will occur immediately after the last day of the ACA sign-up season, which the Trump administration has shortened, leaving the vast majority of such consumers stranded without any way to switch to a plan they might prefer.

  • States Ask U.S. Court to Keep up Health Subsidies Cut by Trump Associated Press by Jonathan J. Cooper — Top government lawyers representing 19 U.S. states on Wednesday asked a federal judge in California to force the administration of President Donald Trump to make health care subsidy payments that Trump abruptly cut off last week. The monthly payments would normally be scheduled to go out Friday. The states, led by California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, asked a judge in San Francisco for an emergency court order by 4 p.m. Thursday requiring they be paid on time. Becerra said Trump is illegally trying to sabotage the Affordable Care Act, President Barack Obama's health care law, which Trump opposes and has pushed unsuccessfully to repeal.

  • With Obamacare, Fewer Americans Were Uninsured When They Were Told They Had Cancer Los Angeles Times by Karen Kaplan — As President Trump and his allies in Congress keep pushing to get rid of Obamacare, new research shows that the contentious law has succeeded in expanding health insurance coverage for Americans with cancer….In the pre-Obamacare years, 5.73 percent of the patients who were newly diagnosed with cancer did not have health insurance to help them pay for their treatment, the researchers found. In 2014, that figure dropped by one-third, to 3.81 percent. The biggest differences were between the states that chose to expand their Medicaid programs (California [where it's called Medi-Cal], Connecticut, Hawaii, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan, New Mexico, New Jersey and Washington) and those that didn't (Alaska, Georgia, Louisiana and Utah).

  • Deep in Trump Country, a Big Stake in Health Care New York Times by Patricia Cohen — Medical care is the job engine in an area that strongly backed President Trump, and the cloud over the Affordable Care Act has left residents uneasy. The law has brought insurance to more than 360,000 people in Arkansas, and it now covers 61 percent of children in the state's small towns and rural areas. "That meant just a gigantic helicopter drop of federal funding," said Mark Duggan, an economist at Stanford. If that is reversed, "the hospital sector is going to get really hard hit."

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