Obamacare 101 | KERA News

Obamacare 101

Shutterstock

Lace up your shoes and get ready to jump in — the health insurance marketplace opens in less than a month. And even though the details of the plans — or prices — available to Texans on the new site haven’t been revealed, you can still get a leg up by preparing early.

Lauren Silverman / KERA News

There are nearly six million people in Texas without health insurance. The majority will be able to get coverage when the state marketplace opens in October, but not everyone. Undocumented immigrants won’t be able to sign up for health care through the exchange. 

Shelley Kofler / KERA News

Republican Senator Ted Cruz faced some hecklers in Dallas Tuesday night as he urged conservatives to demand their elected representatives vote to defund ObamaCare.

The push comes as Cruz is increasingly mentioned as a likely presidential candidate in 2016.

The Oct. 1 launch of the new health insurance exchanges is now less than two months away, and people are starting to pay attention to the changes these new marketplaces may bring to the nation's health care system.

Will you need to look for coverage on the Texas Health Insurance Marketplace? How much will it cost? Find answers on our new Breakthroughs blog.

Shutterstock

When it opens October 1st, this marketplace will not have any lines. At least that’s what we’re hoping. In Texas, the federally run health insurance marketplace (formerly known as “the exchange”), is an online shopping site designed to take the confusion out of buying private health insurance. So how will it work and who needs to shop there? We got the breakdown from Stacey Pogue of the Austin-based nonprofit, the Center for Public Policy Priorities.

Shutterstock

Money for the so-called health insurance “navigators” has arrived. The federal government announced Thursday that eight Texas organizations will receive a total of $10.8 million to train “navigators” to help uninsured Texans find coverage on the new marketplace set to open Oct.1.

Dickey's Barbecue Pit

Running a business like Dickey’s Barbecue Pit or La Duni Latin Cafe is about to get more complicated. There are still a lot of unknowns when it comes to the Affordable Care Act (also known as ACA or Obamacare), but there is general consensus that it will have a big impact on businesses.

When you arrive at a hospital, your first question probably isn't "Who owns this place?" But the answer may be important. Critics say doctor owned hospitals increase prices, cherry-pick patients and create conflicts of interest. The Dallas Morning News reports Physician-owned hospitals in North Texas are finding ways to expand despite provisions in the Affordable Care Act that discourage their growth.

Shutterstock

And you thought learning the Dewey Decimal System was hard. Librarians across the country have been recruited to help people seeking health insurance figure out their options under Obamacare.   

Shelley Kofler / KERA News

Governor Rick Perry is adamant, Texas will not make Medicaid available to more Texans by taking part in a federal program. But recently other Republican governors in Nevada and Arizona have changed their minds, saying they can’t ignore the billions of federal dollars they’d lose by opting out.

Lawmakers in Austin are now debating what Texas should do, including a senator from  Greenville who also wears a stethoscope.  

Credit: jmtimages (cc) flickr

In 2014, companies with more than 50 workers must provide health insurance or pay penalties under the Affordable Care Act.  The new healthcare law offers help to some small businesses, but leaves others worried about the bottom line.  

Pages