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A Conversation with Crowdfunder Luis Lang

TCF fellow Harold Pollack, who has chronicled health insurance issues in the past, conducted an interview with an individual who has incurred high costs for medical procedures and holds often conflicting (but mostly negative) views of the Affordable Care Act. Pollack delves into the politics of health care reform in the interview and provides a detailed transcript:

Lang: So I filled it out. I got approved. I go for my fourth session and the bill went from $80 … and I was expecting it to go down … went up to over $600.

Pollack: Oh, wow.

Lang: And so I’m like “Okay, I need an explanation of this.” And what they told me at that moment was because the Affordable Healthcare Act going into effect, he could no longer give me the discounts he was giving me. But I was okay with it because the three injections that I got was enough to clear my eye out.

Read the full transcription printed in

Tags: obamacare, insurance, health coverage, health care reform, affordable care act

How King v. Burwell Could Harm Us All

TCF policy associate Clio Chang reminds us of just how many parties will be affected by the Supreme Court's ruling of the King v. Burwell case.


The ACA’s Fifth Anniversary: 16.4 Million Americans Covered So Far

As supporters of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) celebrate its fifth anniversary, TCF president Mark Zuckerman and policy associate Clio Chang review the various arguments made by opponents of the ACA and see how they are holding up.


Is Expanding Medicaid an Essential Part of Reducing Mass Incarceration?

The problem of mass incarceration expands further than reforming the criminal justice system; it also involves addressing the reach of Medicaid recipients. TCF fellow Harold Pollack spoke with Mike Konczal of the Roosevelt Institute to explain how expansion of Medicaid coverage would assist inmates needing mental health services, substance abuse treatment, and medical care that may have landed them behind bars in the first place.

Think about who is not eligible for Medicaid before health reform. A low-income male who is not a veteran or a custodial parent, or who doesn’t qualify for Ryan-White HIV/AIDS benefits. They may have a serious substance abuse problem, but that wouldn’t qualify them for federal disability benefits. They, with the expansion, can get access to Medicaid simply because they are poor.

The full interview can be accessed here.

Tags: mental health, medicaid expansion, incarceration, criminal justice system

A Tale of Two Prisons

The problem of inmates receiving quality health services while incarcerated has been in the public eye for some time now, particularly because of prisons such as Rikers that have demanded reform from legislators. TCF policy associate Clio Chang brings another, less known issue into question, however, with her article that takes a closer look at Willacy County Correctional Center in Raymondville, Texas. The difference here is that Willacy is a federally contracted private prison that mostly houses noncitizens who have tried to reenter the US after being deported. The health services at Willacy fare much, much worse for a number of reasons, despite the recent riot by inmates there.

While public prisons like Rikers can become dysfunctional, the profit margins of private prisons can be greatly enhanced by having lawmakers send over more inmates. Thus it's no surprise that the three biggest private prison companies -- CCA, GEO, and MTC -- have spent more than $45 million on lobbying and campaign contributions since 2000.

Clio's article is featured in RealClearPolicy.

Tags: rikers island, prison reform, prison healthcare, immigration reform

SCOTUSblog: Afternoon Round-up: Today’s Argument in King v. Burwell

Yesterday TCF's President Mark Zuckerman wrote a piece on the King v. Burwell case and his first-hand experiences during the drafting of the Affordable Care Act as staff director of one of the three House committees that wrote, managed, and passed the law. The post was included in SCOTUSblog's afternoon report of the day's coverage of the case.

See the full round-up, including Zuckerman's article, on SCOTUSblog here.

Tags: supreme court, king v. burwell, affordable care act, aca


Social Insurance

Social Insurance

Compared to other advanced nations, America’s retirement security and health care systems offer weaker protections against risks we all face. The Century Foundation’s work focuses on ideas for strengthening Social Security, pensions, and health care – including steps for building on the Affordable Care Act.

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