Blog (April 2010)
The major overhaul of our health care system is now over a month old but it is now that the hard work really begins. Over the next few months and even years, groups like Georgians for a Healthy Future and others will be deciphering the most complex parts of the law and translating them in to real-time useful information for you and your family. While we’re doing that, we will try to provide you with a handful of resources that can help! Here’s the first installment of useful tools that will help you understand the massive change that our health care system is undergoing.
Guest Blog by Holly Lang, Georgia Watch
In a March ruling that could hold implications for all nonprofit hospitals, the Illinois Supreme Court stripped not-for-profit Provena Covenant Medical Center of its exemption from property tax, stating that the hospital did not provide enough charity care to justify that exemption.
A hospital earns its tax-exempt status through the benefits it provides to the community, the most of which being the free or reduced-cost care for those eligible for such assistance. Such care is deemed indigent or charity care.
By Benjamin Nanes
Starting in 2014, the health care reform legislation recently passed by Congress will prohibit insurers from discriminating against people with pre-existing conditions. For the next few years though, insurers will be allowed to continue their current practice of charging higher premiums for people with chronic medical conditions, or denying coverage altogether. In order to provide immediate help to those who are unable to purchase health insurance because of preexisting conditions, the legislation also provides for the creation of state-based high-risk pools where people who could not purchase insurance elsewhere would be able to find coverage. But Georgia’s insurance commissioner and Republican candidate for governor, John Oxendine, doesn’t want the state to participate.
Guest Blog By Mike King
U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson’s response in this morning’s Atlanta Journal-Constitution to how grateful he is to the American health care system after his recent hospitalizations encapsulates the difficulty the Republican party has in deciding whether it wants to repeal the just-passed health insurance reform law altogether, or repeal parts of it and replace it with better ideas.
Guest Blog By Timothy Sweeney
Senior Healthcare Analyst, GBPI
As we approach the final seven legislative days for 2010, there’s still a great deal of uncertainty surrounding both the schedule the General Assembly will set for themselves, as well as with the policy-related results of the session.
Still the most important task before the House and Senate – really the only thing the Legislature HAS to accomplish during the session – is the FY 2011 budget. Currently, House appropriations subcommittees are scheduled for April 12, which means we could see subcommittee budget recommendations next week and passage of the FY 2011 budget by the House later in the week.