Health Care

healthcare.gov

People looking to buy health insurance through the North Carolina exchange may soon have another company to choose from. UnitedHealthCare plans to offer federally-subsidized coverage in the state starting next year.


Medicaid Reform in North Carolina

May 12, 2014
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Governor Pat McCrory's administration is taking a new approach to overhauling the state's most expensive health care program. Medicaid serves approximately 1.8 million low-income parents, children, seniors and people with disabilities. McCrory had previously rolled out a model that would've probably put a few insurance companies in charge of managing the program. But after many in North Carolina's medical community made it clear they didn't like that approach, the governor has changed course and submitted a new plan to the General Assembly, with the hopes of getting it passed in the short legislative session that starts this week. We take a closer look at Medicaid in North Carolina and what the new plan would mean for patients, providers and taxpayers, when Charlotte Talks.

Michael Tomsic

Tuesday is the final deadline for people to sign up for health insurance this year through healthcare.gov. The online exchange, or marketplace, is a signature part of the Affordable Care Act, and it's supposed to make shopping for health insurance as easy as shopping for other products online. Over the past six months, WFAE's Michael Tomsic has been meeting with two young North Carolinians as they tried to use the exchange. Here are their stories.


We are faced with so many food choices these days, especially processed foods, that it's easy to eat badly. Unhealthy eating and other lifestyle choices can lead to the development of diabetes. Carolinas Healthcare System and the YMCA recognized the rise in North Carolinians with Diabetes and an even larger number of folks at risk for developing the condition. They have introduced a program to help everyone recognize the signs of diabetes, take steps to avoid developing it and to learn to maintain, and in some case, reverse the effects. CHS and the YMCA are out to raise diabetes awareness and we'll learn too.

North Carolina health officials say they inadvertently disclosed the personal information of almost 49,000 children receiving Medicaid coverage.

The state Department of Health and Human Services said Friday night that nearly 49,000 Medicaid cards showing the children's names, Medicaid identification numbers, dates of birth and primary care physicians were mailed December 30th to the wrong people. Spokesman Ricky Diaz said officials were informed of the problem Thursday and provided public notice as quickly as possible. The department is investigating.

healthcare.gov

It's been a little over a month since President Obama's key piece of legislation: the Affordable Care Act went LIVE on the web. Well, it went live but didn't really work at first. And now, it kind of works. Since healthcare.gov launched, there have been plenty of discussions and discoveries about just how affordable insurance will be, who qualifies, those who fall into the coverage hole,’ and much more. We are going to look back on the past month with professionals and experts who have been working directly with the public. And we will get more clarity about the relationship between Carolinas Healthcare System and Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina. Join us for an update on the Affordable Care Act in North Carolina.

Longtime public radio hosts Joe and Terry Graedon of the People's Pharmacy join us today. They've been on a mission for more than 30 years to educate listeners about their health. The Graedon's are in Charlotte this week for several events where they'll speak about "Tapping Grandma's Wisdom"- home remedies and healthy living. Joe and Terry Graedon join us to discuss health, home remedies and take your health questions, when Charlotte Talks.

About 1.5 million North Carolinians rely on Medicaid for health care. It's a massive program that costs the state about $36 million a day. And it may be about to change dramatically. Governor Pat McCrory is pushing for an overhaul that some say would privatize the program. We'll examine what's working in the current model – what's not – and what the overhaul would mean for North Carolina, when Charlotte Talks.

We are now nearly half way through a pivotal year for the implementation of important aspects of the Affordable Care act. Many doctors, administrators and patients are being affected by these changes and the results are somewhat mixed. Two people in the trenches of healthcare weigh in on the current state of the ACA in our state and the nation. One is an economist and the other a practicing physician and both say that health care "justice" is still far from reality. We'll look at the concept of "healthcare justice," what it means and whether it's possible.

CaroMont Health is standing by its choice of a new system-wide slogan, which was unveiled along with a change in name for Gaston Memorial Hospital.  The hospital will now be known as CaroMont Regional Medical Center.   WFAE's Mark Rumsey spoke with CaroMont's vice president of Marketing and Communications, Penny Cowden about the slogan "Cheat Death."

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