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What’s Past is Prologue

| Apr 19, 2017 | Hawaii

Hawaii Contingency Plans for ACA Repeal

| Mar 29, 2017 | Hawaii

Congress passed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act on March 21, 2010.  The very next day Republicans introduced legislation to repeal it, and when they took over as the House majority, they voted to repeal Obamacare more than 50 times.  However, the House couldn’t muster a repeal vote on...[ Read More ]

Funding wish list includes the other things that make us healthy

| Mar 23, 2017 | Hawaii

There’s an increasing awareness that clinical care is a relatively minor contributor to a person’s health status. Studies show that poor health is more commonly related to poverty, poor education, environmental factors, and chronic discrimination and stress.  Countries that invest more in social services and education have healthier populations and...[ Read More ]

Medicaid and oral health overlooked in House budget

| Mar 23, 2017 | Hawaii

While working on two State Health Innovation Plans in Hawaii, I heard over and over from providers about the problems that arise due to poor access to behavioral and oral health care. Mental health and substance abuse services are currently considered essential services and coverage parity is required, if not...[ Read More ]

Legislature considers prescriptive authority for psychologists, again

| Mar 16, 2017 | Hawaii

On March 16th, the House Committee on Health considers SB384, which would provide prescriptive authority for psychologists.  This is a practice approved in the Dept. of Defense health system and at least four other states. In Hawaii, prescribing psychologists would complete rigorous educational requirements (a post-doctoral master’s degree in psychopharmacology),...[ Read More ]

Hawaii Legislative Update: HSAs and HCRs

| Mar 13, 2017 | Hawaii

Health Savings Accounts, like so much else about our health insurance landscape, would look different in Hawaii. Essentially, HSAs don’t exist here where the Prepaid Health Care Act governs coverage; however, House Bill 407 could change that. Unlike federal rules that allow high deductible health plans for employees if paired...[ Read More ]

Hawaii's response to ACA repeal

| Mar 9, 2017 | Hawaii

For decades Hawaii has ranked among the top states for health insurance coverage due not just to our unique ERISA-exempt employer mandate but also to sizeable percentages of the population covered by Medicaid, Medicare, and military or veterans’ benefits.  Pre-Affordable Care Act, the non-elderly uninsured population was typically around 10%. ...[ Read More ]