Tag Archives: health insurance

Consumers Pay Lower Percentage of National Health Bill… But Many Families Hit Hard by High Deductibles

  Experts were surprised this week when the latest government survey showed that consumers actually paid a slightly smaller share of the nation’s total health bill in 2011, even though more people now pay higher deductibles. Total U.S. spending on health care grew 3.9% in 2011 (including all medical goods and services, public health, cost of health insurance, investments, and government costs). That equals 17.9% of Gross Domestic Product (the same as 2009 and 2010) or about $8,680 per person in the nation. Consumers paid just over one-quarter (28%) of total costs. Meanwhile, federal government health spending has risen more than three times as fast as consumer health spending since

New Help with the Tough Struggle with Cancer Costs

Difficulty managing the cost of their cancer care stressed three out of four patients, according to a study recently completed by the Cancer Support Community.  In addition two out of three said their health care team didn’t discuss financial aspects of care with them. In an effort to help patients struggling with cancer expense, the Cancer Support Community has just released Frankly Speaking about Cancer: Coping with the Cost of Care. You can order a free print copy of the book, read sections online or download it.

New organization works to insure the uninsured

Under the new health care law, millions of Americans will benefit from more accessible and affordable health care – but the key will be getting individuals actually enrolled. Enroll America is a new nonpartisan, nonprofit organization whose mission is to ensure that all Americans are enrolled in and retain health coverage. It will work at the state and federal levels to push for streamlined enrollment procedures and will also raise awareness of enrollment options among the uninsured. If you are uninsured, learn about your options at the Enroll America website.

New Federal Rules Protect Genetic Information from Misuse by Health Insurers

The federal government issued new rules on October 1 protect individuals against having genetic information used unfairly to raise health insurance rates, deny health insurance, or limit coverage because of pre-existing conditions. As part of the implementation of the Genetic Information Non-Discrimination Act (GINA), the Departments of Health and Human Services, Labor, and Treasury published the new regulations in the Federal Register, providing for a comment period before they become final. In addition, the Office for Civil Rights in the Department of Health and Human Services proposed changes to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) to clarify that genetic information is health information.  As such, insurance companies cannot