From all indications, the second enrollment for Obamacare is going smoothly for Connecticut residents. But then, Connecticut residents had a relatively easy time the first go-round, even while the federal exchange’s website crashed beneath the weight of would-be applicants. If enrollment is easier all around this time, the law itself faces some of its toughest challenges. The Supreme Court will hear a case that will examine the legality of important federal subsides that help low- and middle-income Americans pay for policies in states that haven’t set up their own exchanges. At issue is the law’s language that refers to subsidies being paid in exchanges “established by the state.” Roughly 4 million people receive those subsidies.
Connecticut outperforms most states in addressing elder long-term care, but needs to improve support for family caregivers, transitions between hospitals and other settings and affordability of nursing homes, according to a national report card. The state ranks 12th overall among all 50 states and the District of Columbia in meeting 26 indicators across five key dimensions of care. It scored high in offering choice of setting and provider, quality of life and quality of care. And while it ranks high for access to care, it needs to substantially improve affordability. The state fares poorly in care transitions (39th) – the process of shifting care from one setting to another – and in support for family caregivers (30th).
Governors in some of the states with the highest rate of uninsured people – including Louisiana, Texas, and Florida – insist they’ll opt out of the Medicaid expansion offered under the Affordable Care Act – or Obamacare. One political website (Politico.com) calls them the “hell-no” states.
As the Malloy administration seeks to expand home health care options and reduce reliance on nursing homes, a new national report shows Connecticut ranking in the bottom-quarter of states on several key indicators of home health quality, including the percentage of home care patients who show improvement in mobility and who avoid hospitalizations.