Health Insurance

The State of Things
12:44 pm
Wed March 26, 2014

Affordable Care Act Insurance Enrollment In North Carolina

Healthcare.Gov
Credit Healthcare.Gov

An update on the Affordable Care Act enrollment with Triangle Business Journal reporter Jason deBruyn

    

The deadline for signing up for health insurance through the Affordable Care Act is just around the corner. By Monday March 31st, the Obama administration hopes that 6 million Americans will have begun the process of enrollment. 

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Health
8:20 am
Mon February 3, 2014

NC Refused Medicaid Expansion. How Is The State Enrolling So Many People For Health Coverage?

NC is enrolling more people in private health care than any other state that refused to expand Medicaid. One analyst says the support network formed by Community Care of North Carolina has made all the difference.
Credit Community Care of North Carolina

North Carolina is enrolling more uninsured people than any other state that refused to set up its own health care exchange under the Affordable Care Act.

Health care policy director Adam Searing of the NC Justice Center says the state-run Medicaid system, Community Care, has made a big difference.

The state has encouraged social and health services to cooperate to provide Medicaid patients solid care up front, and now friends and family members who don't qualify for Medicaid have affordable options and guidance for enrolling in private healthcare.

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Business & Economy
8:18 am
Mon October 28, 2013

Private Health Care Exchanges Coming To NC

Credit NC Department of Health and Human Services

At least two private health insurance exchanges will soon be launching in North Carolina. 

The NC Chamber and a company called Digital Benefit Advisors are opening websites next month that will act as private marketplaces for health insurance.  Leaders for both organizations say they're designed for employees of companies that might be scaling back their insurance policies.

North Carolina Chamber COO Jim Simpson says the idea is to encourage competition and decrease the cost of insurance.

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Health
7:52 am
Wed September 25, 2013

A Week Before Affordable Care Act, Navigators Spreading The Word

The health exchange under the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, goes into effect next week.
Credit Flickr.com

North Carolina is asking local health departments to work with people hired to give information about the Affordable Care Act. 

The Department of Health and Human Services sent a letter to every county last week, encouraging them to work with so-called health care navigators.  The federal government gave out about $3 million in grants to non-profits, hospitals and volunteers to hire navigators last month.

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Business & Economy
9:03 am
Thu September 19, 2013

Duke Energy To End Retiree Benefit Packages

Credit Duke Energy

Duke Energy is dropping its practice of paying for retirees' health benefits.  The country's largest utility joins companies like IBM, General Electric and Time Warner in the policy change.

 Instead of covering insurance for more than 14,000 retirees, Duke Energy will give them a yearly stipend.  Retirees can use that payment to buy their own coverage.  Dave Scanzoni is a company spokesman.

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Politics & Government
9:01 am
Thu September 19, 2013

Census: Poverty Up In NC, Health Insurance Rate Steady

US Census Bureau releases its 2012 results on Income, Health Insurance and Poverty.
Credit US Census Bureau

The latest Census report shows North Carolina continues a slow crawl out of the economic downturn.

In 2012, more people lived below the poverty level in North Carolina than they did the year before.  The Census Bureau’s American Community Survey shows 18% of North Carolinians live in poverty compared to about 16% nationally.

Ed Welniak heads the Income Statistics branch of the Census Bureau.

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Health
7:22 am
Mon August 19, 2013

BlueCross BlueShield Adds Retail Locations Ahead Of Health Exchange

BlueCross BlueShield of North Carolina is adding retail locations ahead of the launch of the state health care exchange.
Credit Blue Cross Blue Shield NC

Insurance provider BlueCross BlueShield of North Carolina is expanding retail locations as the federal government prepares to launch the state's health care exchange. 

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Health
4:00 pm
Mon August 5, 2013

Low-Income Health Clinic Closing In Greensboro

HealthServe is closing in Greensboro this week and 20,000 people will have to find a medical provider elsewhere.
Credit Flickr.com

An estimated 20,000 patients will be affected by the closing of a health clinic in Greensboro later this month.  HealthServe provides care for people who are low-income, and have little or insufficient health insurance. The clinic began as a volunteer effort by local doctors in the 1990s. HealthServe has lost funding from the County and Moses Cone Hospital. The State’s recent decision to not expand Medicaid was the third strike.

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Health
1:16 pm
Wed July 31, 2013

NC Regulators Approve Plans For Health Benefit Exchange

Credit The White House

The state Department of Insurance has approved subsidized health care plans that will be available under the Affordable Care Act.

Several details of the plans remain sealed as trade secrets, including rates, deductibles and how many were approved.  Marni Schribman of the state Insurance Department says the plans will be part of North Carolina's health care exchange, which is scheduled to launch in October.

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Business & Economy
5:19 pm
Mon June 3, 2013

Blue Cross Blue Shield Of NC Moving Out Of Iconic Chapel Hill Building

BCBSNC's Chapel Hill headquarters, a rhomboid-shaped glass building built in 1973.
Credit BCBSNC

Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina employees will soon move out of their landmark Chapel Hill headquarters and consolidate operations in Durham. The health insurer purchased two buildings on its Durham campus where they could move employees starting in September. 

Spokesman Lew Borman says the move is expected to save the company up to $2.5 million in operating costs annually.  As for the signature building they now call home, Borman says its fate is yet to be determined.

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