State Estimates of Health Premiums Are Faulty, Misleading Consumers | Print |  E-mail
August 2013

Starting October 1, 2013, Floridians will be able to purchase private health insurance plans through the new Health Insurance Marketplace created through the federal health reform law.

On July 31, the state entity responsible for regulating health insurance policies released information titled "Individual Monthly Health Insurance Premiums Before and After PPACA."

Unfortunately, the information provides no credible comparison of the impact of health reform on rates.  Its continued use as a basis for official projections is likely to result in direct harm to consumers.

> Read the report.

Uncovering Coverage Opportunities In Health Insurance Marketplace | Print |  E-mail
June 2013

Beginning October 1, 2013, millions of Floridians who are uninsured - or who are insured but have inadequate or unaffordable coverage - will be able to purchase a health plan through the new Health Insurance Marketplace established by the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA).

Although a number of details remain unclear about Florida's Marketplace and the specific plan offerings to be made available to consumers there, the bottom line is that many more Floridians will be able to get and keep quality, affordable health insurance coverage than ever before.

> Read the report.

Comparison of Alternatives for Medicaid Expansion | Print |  E-mail
April 2013

With only two weeks left in the 2013 regular session, the question of whether the Florida Legislature will extend meaningful, affordable health coverage to more than a million very low-income, uninsured Floridians remains unanswered.

What the majority in both the House and Senate have made clear is that they have no plans to support a straightforward expansion of the current Medicaid program. As a result, three different alternatives to "Medicaid expansion" are presently working their way through the legislative process.

However, only one of the three proposals would allow significant numbers of Floridians below the poverty level to get and keep real coverage that would provide sustained access to essential care. That same proposal is also the only one of the three that would enable Florida to draw down up to $51 billion in federal matching funds over the next ten years, rather than allowing taxpayer funding earmarked for Florida to be diverted to benefit other states.

This brief compares the three proposals and their implications for the two key groups of stakeholders affected by the decision: low-income, uninsured Floridians and Florida taxpayers generally.

> Read the report.

Rejection of Medicaid Expansion Would Prove Costly to Businesses | Print |  E-mail
March 2013

Many of the businesses that anchor the state's service-based, tourist-dependent economy would be placed at a significant competitive disadvantage if Florida rejects Medicaid expansion.

These include, for example, Florida's retail, restaurant and hotel chains.

If Florida expands Medicaid, employers pay no penalty for low-wage workers who enroll in Medicaid.

As a result, a large employer that does not provide meaningful, affordable coverage to its eligible low-wage employees will save $3,000 for each such employee that enrolls in Medicaid instead of using Premium Tax Credits in the Exchange—but only if Florida elects to expand Medicaid.

> Read the report.

Governor's Budget Avoids Gutting Safety Net But Misses Opportunity to Strengthen State | Print |  E-mail
February 2013

Governor Rick Scott’s proposed 2013–14 budget looks much different than his recommendation of a year ago, when he proposed more than $2 billion in cuts to health and human services (HHS) programs.

This year, the governor’s budget calls for more than a billion dollar increase in the HHS portion of the budget.

The governor’s 2013–14 budget proposal has some serious shortcomings, however.  Of perhaps greatest significance is what is not included, namely any indication of an intent to expand the Medicaid program to cover almost a million uninsured Florida adults under the Affordable Care Act.

> Read the report.

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