Saint Francis Gains Understanding of New Healthcare Law


Published 01/29 2014 01:49PM

Updated 01/29 2014 02:03PM

Over the past few months, WFFT has covered many stories about how Obamacare is affecting you, but what do healthcare providers and insurance carriers think?

Over 700 people gathered at the University of Saint Francis to gain a deeper understanding of the new law.  

"The Affordable Care Act is 906 pages long.  I don't think you can say on the whole, it's a good or a bad thing."

Blayne Miley is the Director of Policy and Advocacy of the Indiana State Nursing Association, and explains why a healthcare professional's understanding of the law can help you at home.

"By being better informed with the Affordable Care Act, they are going to be able to better answer patient's questions that arise, by how the Affordable Care Act affects the patients."

One specific way the Affordable Care Act affects Hoosiers differently is that surrounding states are expanding Medicaid while Indiana is not going to.

"However we are waiting to see whether the Healthy Indiana Plan will be used as an alternative to traditional Medicaid to provide additional coverage to Hoosiers."

Physicians Health Plan insures over 50,000 Hoosiers in Northeast Indiana and CEO Jim Brunnemer says they are a carrier on the Marketplace as well.

"Well, it's been a lot of work with the regulations and getting prepared for the new exchanges, and obviously there's been some challenges with that."

Brunnemer explains why many people have seen or will see their rates go up.

"I don't think most people had an impression of the impact of the kind of Marketplace you had before that could be medically underwritten and where you could deny and not take certain people that applied."

Brunnemer says that giving coverage to everyone is a good thing, but will raise rates.

"What effect that has on premium and it is pretty dramatic, so now they are seeing 50,60,100% increases so yeah, they are upset."

While they could go down a little bit once younger people sign up, prices are probably going to be higher than before.

"Now that you're in this guaranteed issued market with these new rules, that's going to be the type of price they're going to have to pay."

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