White House to States: All or Nothing on the Medicaid Expansion

By: Tuesday December 11, 2012 9:05 am

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced that states will not be eligible for funding for the Medicaid expansion unless they expand it all the way to 133% of poverty as envisioned by the law.


Low-Productive Congress Finishes Spending Bill, Beats War Drums With Iran on Way Out the Door

By: Monday September 24, 2012 7:45 am

The Senate passed, by a 90-1 count, an “Iran containment” resolution that creates that “red line” Benjamin Netanyahu pleaded for recently. And, it puts the red line for Iran’s nuclear program at a nuclear capability rather than a nuclear weapon, a shift from current Presidential policy.

In Good Omen for Contraceptive Mandate, Federal Judge Throws Out Challenge

By: Wednesday July 18, 2012 2:45 pm

In the first federal court ruling on the Obama Administration’s mandate for the provision of free contraceptive coverage as part of the preventive services package in the health care law, a judge in Nebraska has thrown out, for lack of standing, the challenge to the mandate pursued by six states and several Catholic entities.

Sebelius Acknowledges Potential Opt-Outs of Medicaid Expansion

By: Wednesday July 11, 2012 9:30 am

For the first time, a top Obama Administration official has acknowledged the possibility that states may opt out of the Medicaid expansion from the Affordable Care Act. In a letter to state governors, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius writes that the Supreme Court ruling means that states could reject the expansion of Medicaid up to 133% of the federal poverty line for all adults under the age of 65 without risking their existing Medicaid funds.

More Spelunking on Contraception

By: Saturday March 17, 2012 1:00 pm

More caving on mandated coverage of contraception from HHS and the Obama Administration. Religious groups that self-insure will be exempt from the rules, and HHS indicated that they are open to further weakening of the required coverages in the future.

Oh, and in a separate ruling, HHS declared that students at religious institutions (like Sandra Fluke) are SOL when it comes to being covered by this requirement of ACA.

White House, Surrogates Push Back on Catholic Bishop Uproar Over Contraception

By: Tuesday February 7, 2012 7:00 am

I didn’t think we had reached the point in America where providing free contraception would be seen as a risky political maneuver, but here we are. Last month, the Administration agreed to universal access to birth control as part of the Affordable Care Act. Insurance companies would need to provide coverage for contraception in both employer plans and on the insurance exchanges without a co-pay.

Obama Administration Agrees to Universal Birth Control Access

By: Friday January 20, 2012 11:05 am

Many health care plans cover Viagra. Now, at least, they will cover birth control pills to the same extent.

Federal Judge Agrees to Review Age Restrictions on Plan B Morning-After Pill

By: Wednesday December 14, 2011 12:30 pm

There was a federal court hearing yesterday on the age restrictions of the morning-after pill. Judge Edward Korman heard arguments, and while he did not take action against the FDA, he did move the case forward. Korman said he was “willing to hear arguments over whether the agency should have allowed the sale of the morning-after pill to girls younger than 17 without a prescription.”

HHS Overrules FDA, Will Not Make Morning After Pill an Over-the-Counter Drug

By: Wednesday December 7, 2011 12:15 pm

Though the FDA supported it, the Department of Health and Human Services decided against allowing young teens access to the morning after pill in over-the-counter drugstores without a prescription. Though birth control is now available for free from doctors for anyone with health insurance, women under 17 facing an unplanned pregnancy will still have to consult a doctor before getting the morning after pill.

Administration Slow-Walks the CLASS Act

By: Sunday September 25, 2011 6:45 am

The CLASS Act was inserted into the Affordable Care Act as a sort of tribute to the late Ted Kennedy, the bill’s longtime champion. It enacts a federal long-term care insurance program, a kind of public option for long-term care. The Obama Administration, emails now show, didn’t like it from the beginning. And now, there are signs that they may not put it into practice.

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