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Health care in Georgia


720,000 Georgians could go without coverage under new GOP health plan

If the latest Republican plan to repeal Obamacare becomes law, about 720,000 more Georgians could go without health insurance, a Georgia State University expert said Wednesday. That’s Georgia’s share of the 23 million nationwide that would lose health insurance under the revamped GOP proposal, according to a long-awaited report from the Congressional Budget Office. The news added to new...


How Georgia’s congressmen voted on replacing Obamacare

WASHINGTON — After months of arm twisting, false starts and political football, the House finally went on the record on the Republican health care plan Thursday. The chamber ultimately passed the measure, known as the American Health Care Act, by a razor-thin 217-213 margin. The vote was strictly along party lines, with 20 Republicans crossing over to vote with every Democrat...
BREAKING: House passes Obamacare repeal after months of infighting

BREAKING: House passes Obamacare repeal after months of infighting

The House voted narrowly entirely along party lines Thursday to pass a Republican bill to repeal and replace Obamacare after months of infighting and false starts. The legislation squeaked through the chamber with only one vote to spare, 217-213. No Democrats voted in favor of the bill, known as the American Health Care Act, and 20 Republicans rejected it. Members of Georgia’s congressional...
BREAKING: House to vote on Obamacare repeal by 2 p.m.

BREAKING: House to vote on Obamacare repeal by 2 p.m.

The House is expected to vote on the GOP health plan to replace the Affordable Care Act between 1:15 p.m. and 1:45 p.m. today. And after months of infighting and false starts, it looks like House Republicans may finally have enough votes to pass the bill, called the American Health Care Act. They need 216 votes to pass it, and in a procedural vote this morning 235 approved a rule to vote on the bill...
Donald Trump’s 100 days leave imprint on Georgia

Donald Trump’s 100 days leave imprint on Georgia

One hundred days into the tenure of the most mold-shattering administration in modern history and President Donald Trump has moved at breakneck pace to strip away federal regulations, reset the country’s economic relationships abroad and dismantle the biggest pieces of his predecessor’s legacy. Georgians now log on to Twitter to gauge the state of mind of the most powerful man in the world...
Eighth rural hospital to close since 2010

Eighth rural hospital to close since 2010

Yet another rural Georgia hospital is going under, in one of the state’s poorest counties. The company that owns Jenkins Medical Center in Millen announced this week that the hospital would shut down after decades in operation. Patients who can afford the gas or the time for an ambulance ride may now go to the company’s hospital in Screven County 20 miles away. It’s the eighth acute...
A guide to the candidates in Georgia’s special election

A guide to the candidates in Georgia’s special election

A field of 18 candidates is running in Tuesday’s special election to represent the 6th Congressional District, which stretches from east Cobb County across north Fulton County to north DeKalb County. The seat opened when Tom Price vacated it to become President Donald Trump’s secretary of health and human services. With such a large number of candidates, a runoff is almost certain. It...
Georgia Senate hopefuls eye health care, transportation and schools

Georgia Senate hopefuls eye health care, transportation and schools

Before Tom Price was appointed to be health and human services secretary, before he was a member of the U.S. House and chairman of the House Budget Committee and before he was a state senator, he was a doctor. In east Cobb County and Sandy Springs, a subregion of Price’s former congressional district, an election for an open state Senate seat that has drawn wide interest from the medical community...
Leading Georgia Sixth District candidates on the issues

Leading Georgia Sixth District candidates on the issues

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution asked the top contenders in the 6th Congressional District special election, based on public polling, how they would approach several issues facing the district and the country today.  Bob Gray: The U.S. Constitution, as the governing legal document for the country, does not establish health care as a right. Further, given the design of the Constitution, which...
Protesters continue to press Georgia’s Perdue to hold town halls

Protesters continue to press Georgia’s Perdue to hold town halls

For 12 straight weeks, dozens of protesters have gathered outside U.S. Sen. David Perdue’s downtown Atlanta office to demand that he hold an in-person town hall meeting. This week, however, they decamped to a grassy strip outside a Brookhaven hotel where he was speaking to make a more personal appeal. The crowd of more than 50, frustrated by Donald Trump’s young presidency and attempts...
A hint that Blue Cross/Blue Shield could withdraw from health care exchanges

A hint that Blue Cross/Blue Shield could withdraw from health care exchanges

Over at Georgia Health News, Andy Miller has the most worrisome news of the morning – a strong hint that the parent company of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Georgia may be pulling out of a number of its exchange markets across the country. Writes Miller: In Georgia, Blue Cross is currently the only exchange health insurer in 96 of the 159 counties. Even a partial pullout would create a...

Isakson open to bipartisan health care negotiations — just don’t call it a ‘gang’

WASHINGTON – At home in Marietta recovering from a pair of back surgeries, Republican U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson has had a lot of time to watch C-SPAN over the last few weeks. That’s included following the twists and turns of the House’s since-collapsed effort to replace Obamacare. In an interview Thursday amid his whirlwind, day-long return to Washington, Isakson said he had been...

Georgia’s lone GOP health care holdout urges leaders to try again

WASHINGTON – The lone Georgia Republican to go against his party leaders on health care thinks the GOP should take another stab at repealing and replacing Obamacare. “Our hearts are ready,” U.S. Rep. Jody Hice of Monroe said in a brief interview Tuesday. A member of the House Freedom Caucus, the group of ultra-conservatives who joined with moderate Republicans to sink the American...
After GOP health plan fails, Georgia explores Medicaid changes

After GOP health plan fails, Georgia explores Medicaid changes

Gov. Nathan Deal’s administration is exploring changes to Georgia’s Medicaid program after a sweeping Republican overhaul of the Affordable Care Act was scuttled last week in a stunning rebuke to Donald Trump and Congressional leaders. The collapse of the GOP health plan has reignited debate in Georgia and other red states over whether to expand Medicaid — the health program...
Health care plan collapses in major setback for Trump, GOP

Health care plan collapses in major setback for Trump, GOP

Obamacare remains the law of the land for the foreseeable future. Republicans, who have campaigned for years on a pledge to repeal the Democrats’ signature health law, saw their efforts collapse in dramatic fashion on Friday. Just minutes before the U.S. House was set to vote, Republican leaders yanked their replacement bill conceding they didn’t have the votes needed to adopt the White...

Shock, awe, tears and cheers in Ga. after GOP health bill collapses

WASHINGTON — There were plenty of ominous signs Friday that the House GOP did not have the votes to pass its health care overhaul, but that didn’t make anything less dramatic shortly after 3:30 p.m., when the news was broken to Republican lawmakers that their effort to overhaul Obamacare had collapsed. The looks on the faces of many congressmen coming out of a closed-door meeting in the...
Trump ‘disappointed’ by GOP failure to pass health plan

Trump ‘disappointed’ by GOP failure to pass health plan

House Republican leaders have shelved legislation that would repeal and replace Obamacare after failing to muster enough support from within their own party. “This is a setback no two ways about it,” House Speaker Paul Ryan said at a Capitol Hill news conference late Friday.   “We just didn’t quite get consensus today,” Ryan said.  Speaking from the...
GOP scrambles to save health bill

GOP scrambles to save health bill

Republican leaders late Thursday conceded major changes to their Obamacare replacement plan in a last-minute effort to win over holdouts within the GOP who had opposed the bill. The biggest change to the plan: eliminating “essential health benefits” such as maternity care and mental health services, which Obamacare requires insurers to offer. Members of the hard-line conservative Freedom...
Vote on GOP health plan delayed, staunch conservatives remain opposed

Vote on GOP health plan delayed, staunch conservatives remain opposed

Freedom Caucus leader Mark Meadows said late Thursday afternoon that Republicans would “get to the finish line” on the GOP’s Obamacare replacement bill, following a meeting with his fellow caucus members. But it wasn’t immediately clear when -- or if -- the House may vote on the plan. A vote was originally set for Thursday but was delayed late Thursday afternoon. The House...
GOP health bill: As vote looms, a race to rein in the holdouts

GOP health bill: As vote looms, a race to rein in the holdouts

The Republican push to repeal Obamacare — a move that could affect access to health care for hundreds of thousands of Georgians — appeared to be in jeopardy on Wednesday as the GOP struggled to win over holdouts within its own ranks. But there were signs late Wednesday that the White House was willing to alter the measure to meet the concerns of conservatives, who were demanding repeal...

Jody Hice’s rejection of GOP health care plan could help sink bill

WASHINGTON — Georgia Congressman Jody Hice is firmly against the Republican health care plan, one of at least two dozen reported GOP opponents who are imperiling the White House-backed legislation roughly 24 hours before the House is expected to vote on the proposal. The Monroe Republican said the current plan “doesn’t go far enough” to repeal Obamacare, despite...

Perdue, Isakson shun the health care spotlight ahead of House nail-biter

WASHINGTON – At a time when their House colleagues are in the hot seat on health care, Georgia’s two senators are studiously avoiding the spotlight – for now. Republican Sens. David Perdue and Johnny Isakson have both sounded positive notes about their party’s plan for repealing and replacing Obamacare, but neither has said definitively whether they’ll back or shun...
Could changes to GOP health plan help older Georgians, Trump voters?

Could changes to GOP health plan help older Georgians, Trump voters?

A series of changes to the GOP’s Obamacare replacement plan -- aimed at winning over hard-line conservatives -- could provide more financial aid to older Americans to help buy them insurance. The move announced Monday night could bolster tax credits for people ages 50 to 64, many of them working class who voted for Donald Trump. The tax credits are aimed at helping people who don’t have...

Jody Hice: Georgia’s last GOP health care holdout

WASHINGTON — For U.S. Rep. Barry Loudermilk, R-Cassville, the moment he decided to support the Republican health care bill came during a private meeting with President Donald Trump. The conservative Republican Study Committee had just successfully lobbied Trump, in the Oval Office no less, for a handful of changes to the legislation that would push it farther to the right. “After...
Even with new White House, Georgia faces old ‘dilemma’ over Medicaid

Even with new White House, Georgia faces old ‘dilemma’ over Medicaid

Gov. Nathan Deal and other state GOP leaders could soon be forced to consider what was once unthinkable: an expansion of the Medicaid program while there’s a Republican in the White House. The governor and Republican allies for years slammed the expansion of the Medicaid rolls under the Affordable Care Act as too costly in the long run, and Deal’s opposition was a cornerstone of his re-election...
Tom Price in the spotlight as point man for GOP health plan

Tom Price in the spotlight as point man for GOP health plan

Under the bright studio lights and a red, white and blue set, moderators and audience members at a recent CNN town hall event took turns grilling Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price about the way the GOP health care bill treats the sick, the vulnerable and the elderly. Questions oscillated from the personal to the emotional to the fiscal. A since-recovered cancer patient spoke of how Obamacare&rsquo...
Trump voters in South Georgia come to terms with GOP health plan

Trump voters in South Georgia come to terms with GOP health plan

Kenneth Peek had a rough year. The South Georgia farm where he and his wife grow corn, wheat and soybeans faced a drought and lost money in 2016. So he’s working construction jobs to make ends meet. The 64-year-old hoped to catch a break on his health care costs. He has insurance through the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare, but the premiums and bills keep going up and up...

Tom Price looks to steady wobbling health care effort with town hall

WASHINGTON – Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price on Wednesday gave a full-throated defense of the House GOP’s health care overhaul, hours after Speaker Paul Ryan acknowledged changes would need to be made to save the embattled plan. The former Georgia congressman, who has become the face of the White House-backed bill, defended the legislation’s treatment of the Medicaid...
Georgia leaders worry state may be ‘punished’ under GOP health care plan

Georgia leaders worry state may be ‘punished’ under GOP health care plan

As Gov. Nathan Deal raised concerns again this week that the U.S. House GOP health care plan could “punish” Georgia and other states that didn’t expand the Medicaid program, one of the state’s leading supporters of the plan urged patience. U.S. Rep. Buddy Carter is Georgia’s sole member on the Energy and Commerce Committee, one of three House panels with jurisdiction...
Hundreds of thousands could lose insurance in Georgia under GOP plan

Hundreds of thousands could lose insurance in Georgia under GOP plan

An estimated 750,000 Georgians — many of them poor and older — could lose their health insurance under the GOP’s Obamacare replacement plan, a new analysis shows. The data offers a first glimpse into how the GOP plan could fundamentally change access to health care in the Peach State. Georgia already has the third highest rate of uninsured in the nation. Roughly...
Lawmaker: Under GOP health care bill, Georgia would be ‘significantly punished’

Lawmaker: Under GOP health care bill, Georgia would be ‘significantly punished’

U.S. Rep. Buddy Carter, R-Pooler, will be making the rounds at the state Capitol on Wednesday. He’s already put himself forward as a fan of the House Republican bid to replace the Affordable Care Act, and will probably make the case to state lawmakers this morning. Some people will take some convincing. In a morning piece by Andy Miller of Georgia Health News, Gov. Nathan Deal reiterated his...

Ga. Republicans in damage control mode on health care

Editor’s note: An earlier version of this story included a tweet from another news outlet that incorrectly quoted U.S. Sen. David Perdue on the Republican health care bill. This story has been updated to reflect his position.  WASHINGTON – Many Georgia Republicans scrambled to re-frame the health care conversation Monday on Capitol Hill after the release of a nonpartisan...
Georgia officials mount response to GOP health plan

Georgia officials mount response to GOP health plan

Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle said Friday that the new health care legislation put forward by Republican leaders in Congress is not something he could support without important changes. Cagle’s comments came following a meeting of a new Georgia Senate task force he has formed to try to nudge Congress to shape the federal proposal to Georgia’s benefit. The task force represents the state’s...
Republican health plan advances amid questions on impact, cost

Republican health plan advances amid questions on impact, cost

Thousands of poor, older Georgians could lose their health insurance in the coming years, while adults who are younger and make more money could be eligible for financial help to buy coverage. Those are just some of the myriad ways Republicans’ Obamacare replacement plan could fundamentally change access to health care in the Peach State. The GOP plan, called the “American Health...
CDC would lose nearly $1 billion under Republican budget

CDC would lose nearly $1 billion under Republican budget

The Republican health care plan moving through the U.S. House of Representatives guts a little-known fund that provides Georgia some $20 million a year, for things like immunization programs, preventing heart disease and strokes, and responding to public health crises. The loss of the federal Prevention and Public Health Fund would deal a $891 million blow to the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease...

A county-by-county look at what the GOP’s health plan would mean for Ga.

WASHINGTON — The breakneck pace of the current health care debate is enough to make anyone’s head spin, even if you’re well-versed in all things health policy. But if there’s one thing worth looking at as Congress continues to vet the GOP’s American Health Care Act and hurl talking points across the cable news, it’s this info on what the plan could ...

David Scott: Rip up GOP health plan, let bipartisan panel start over

WASHINGTON — On many issues, U.S. Rep. David Scott, D-Atlanta, fashions himself as a man in the middle on Capitol Hill, ready and willing to use his moderate credentials to broker agreements across the aisle. The question has always been whether there were any Republicans to meet him halfway. When it comes to the GOP’s Obamacare replacement bill, Scott, like virtually...
Georgia Republicans sharply divided over health care plan

Georgia Republicans sharply divided over health care plan

Georgia Republicans are sharply divided over the GOP proposal to replace the Affordable Care Act that’s galloping through the U.S. House of Representatives, raising concerns about the lack of a cost estimate for the overhaul and its impact on the state’s budget as it moves through Capitol Hill. As House lawmakers prepare to vote on the sweeping rewrite of health care policy, at least two...

The Ga. Republicans on the fence about the GOP health care bill

WASHINGTON — Georgia’s 10 Republicans serving in the House of Representatives often take great pains to be on the same page, meeting weekly when Congress is in session to catch up and share notes on legislation coming down the pike. And generally speaking, the GOP side of the delegation — they call themselves the G-10 — sticks together on major bills. At the moment that...
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