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Obama says health law is working, private insurance enrollment at 8 million

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama delivered a vigorous defense of his signature healthcare law on Thursday, saying private insurance enrollment under it has reached 8 million people and faulting Republicans for failing to agree with him that "this thing is working." The White House separately offered up statistics showing that 28 percent of those who signed up are between the ages of 18 and 34 years old.

UnitedHealth's 1st-quarter profit tumbles 8 per cent, insurer cites overhaul costs

UnitedHealth Group's first-quarter net income slid 8 per cent as funding cuts to a key product and costs imposed by the health care overhaul dented the health insurer's performance. The Minnetonka, Minn., company said Thursday the overhaul and government budget cuts added about 35 cents per share in costs during the quarter. The federal law aims to provide coverage for millions of uninsured people, but it also trims funding for Medicare Advantage plans, changes how insurers can write their coverage and adds an industry-wide tax, which is not deductible.

CBO slightly lowers U.S. deficit estimates as health subsidies fall

By David Lawder and David Morgan WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Health insurance subsidies under the Affordable Care Act will cost slightly less than previously thought, helping to slow down the forecast growth of U.S. deficits over the next decade, the Congressional Budget Office said on Monday.

Health secretary Sebelius says 7.5 million people have applied for coverage under health law

WASHINGTON - Enrolment for the president's health care law has grown to 7.5 million Americans, the Obama administration announced Thursday, handing President Barack Obama and the Democrats bigger coverage numbers to tout in the face of election-year attacks.

House defeats bipartisan fix to ACA's treatment of health plans for expatriate workers

WASHINGTON - The House on Wednesday rejected a bipartisan fix to the Affordable Care Act that would exempt U.S. health plans sold to expatriate workers from having to comply with the law's mandates. The legislation was aimed at helping U.S. insurance companies like Cigna and Metlife that are now at a competitive disadvantage with overseas firms that do not have to comply with mandates such as the so-called Cadillac tax on high-end plans, patient protections and a host of reporting requirements.

Obama signs actions aiming at gender pay gap as Senate begins debate on wage equity

WASHINGTON - In a concerted election-year push to draw attention to women's wages, President Barack Obama signed directives Tuesday that would make it easier for workers of federal contractors to get information about workplace compensation. He seasoned his move with a sharp rebuke of Republicans whom he accused of "gumming up the works" on workplace fairness.

House Democrats unveil budget plan with tax hikes, immigration reform

WASHINGTON - House Democrats have unveiled their response to Rep. Paul Ryan's GOP budget, and it relies on a $1.5 trillion in new revenues over the coming 10 years and the economic benefits of immigration reform to make the numbers work.

U.S. reports three million Medicaid enrollments under Obamacare

By David Morgan WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Three million lower-income Americans have enrolled in the Medicaid program for the poor so far during the rollout of U.S. President Barack Obama's healthcare reform law, the administration announced on Friday.

Young, fabulous and rich? Most health insurers still won't take you outside enrolment windows

WASHINGTON - Here's more fallout from the health care law: Until now, customers could walk into an insurance office or go online to buy standard health care coverage any time of year. Not anymore. Many people who didn't sign up during the government's open enrolment period that ended Monday will soon find it difficult or impossible to get insured this year, even if they go directly to a private company and money is no object. For some it's already too late.

House GOP votes to change health care law's definition of full-time work

WASHINGTON - House Republicans are launching a new attack on the president's health care law, just days after the law beat expectations by signing up more than 7 million Americans. The House GOP scheduled a vote Thursday to change the law's definition of full-time work from 30 hours a week to 40 hours a week. The result would be that fewer workers would get employer-sponsored health coverage.
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