Governments

[frame align=”none”]Governments[/frame]

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act brings several changes to both state and federal governments.  One of the most important changes is the expansion of Medicaid.  As written, the PPACA requires states to expand their Medicaid programs to encompass a larger portion of their populations.  The Supreme Court, however, ruled that the federal government could not force states to expand Medicaid (1). Currently, Governor Tom Corbett has proposed a plan to use the federal government’s Medicaid funding to provide subsidies for low-income individuals for them to purchase private insurance via the health care exchange.

CHIPRegardless of whether or not the Governor decides to expand Medicaid, many children currently insured under Pennsylvania’s Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) will be moved from CHIP to Medicaid on January 1, 2014 under the new health care law.  Governor Corbett wants Pennsylvania to be exempt from this measure, although he has yet to file a formal request with the Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius.  Assuming no exemption is granted, approximately 40,000 children out of the 187,000 insured under CHIP will be moved to Medicaid.  According to Community Legal Services of Philadelphia, Medicaid offers more comprehensive coverage than CHIP, meaning that those children who are moved from CHIP to Medicaid will actually benefit (3).  Anyone being moved from CHIP to Medicaid will be notified beforehand.

Under PPACA, the federal government will be establishing an online insurance exchange where people can purchase insurance.  Each state must provide access to an insurance exchange for its residents, either by Healthcare.govcreating its own exchange or using the federal exchange.  Pennsylvania will be using the federal insurance exchange to provide its residents access to health care coverage (4).  Enrollment in the exchange begins October 1, 2013, and plans purchased through the exchange take effect January 1, 2014.  The open enrollment period ends March 31, 2014.  Pennsylvanians can access the online insurance exchange at www.healthcare.gov beginning October 1, 2013 (5).

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Government Employees

Full-time employees of the State of Pennsylvania will continue to receive health care coverage through their current insurance provider.  Employees of any other governing body, such as the City of Philadelphia or another municipal government, should ask their supervisors whether or not their health care coverage will be affected by PPACA.

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Sources:

  1. http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2013/06/the-supreme-courts-obamacare-ruling-was-1-year-ago-today/277344/
  2. http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/opinion/editorials/corbett-care-the-governor-appears-to-be-rethinking-medicaid-702697/
  3. http://www.philly.com/philly/news/politics/state/20130830_ap_f32c816128c344bf9f018faefdc1d5a0.html?c=
  4. http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/2013/07/30/pennsylvania-the-affordable-care-act/
  5. http://www.healthcare.gov/
  6. http://www.factcheck.org/2013/05/congress-and-an-exemption-from-obamacare/
  7. http://www.politico.com/story/2013/08/capitol-hill-obamacare-crisis-solved-95100.html
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Gallery

August 4, 2017: Senator Blake joined a number of local officials to welcome Governor Tom Wolf back to Scranton to tour the success story that is the United Neighborhood Centers' community revitalization effort along Cedar Avenue in South Scranton. August 4, 2017: Senator Blake joined a number of local officials to welcome Governor Tom Wolf back to Scranton to tour the success story that is the United Neighborhood Centers' community revitalization effort along Cedar Avenue in South Scranton. August 4, 2017: Senator Blake joined a number of local officials to welcome Governor Tom Wolf back to Scranton to tour the success story that is the United Neighborhood Centers' community revitalization effort along Cedar Avenue in South Scranton. August 3, 2017: Senator Blake and State Rep. Mike Carroll joined Dupont resident Stanley Knick for his swearing-in ceremony to the Pennsylvania Board of Game Commissioners.

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