If you are turning 65 or you are 65 + and retiring from your place of employment and losing your group coverage, you have 90 days prior to the qualifying event (e.g. your birthday or the date of losing your coverage) and 90 days after the qualifying event to sign up for either a Medicare Advantage or Medicare Supplement plan as guaranteed issue policies.                        Continue Reading
ad·vo·cate noun /ˈadvəkit/ A person who pleads on someone else's behalf. A person who publicly supports or recommends a particular cause or policy.
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Hello. I’m Cary Hall, host of America’s Healthcare Advocate and President of Benefits By Design, Inc. Whether you need individual, family or employer-sponsored health insurance, we will help you find the best Kansas City health insurance provider & a plan that fits your needs and fits your budget. Discover the difference an advocate can make for you!  --- LEARN MORE
When Should I Sign Up For Medicare?
WASHINGTON — The Obama administration plans on Wednesday to propose expanding Medicare to cover programs to prevent diabetes among millions of people at high risk of developing the disease, marking the sixth anniversary of the Affordable Care Act with the prospect of a new benefit                                      Continue Reading
Medicare Proposal Takes Aim at Diabetes
America's Healthcare Advocate is pleased to announce its newest affiliate:  WBCR 1470 AM in Alcoa, Tennessee.  We want to thank Adam Miller and the folks at Genesis Communications Network for the opportunity and welcome our new audience in Alcoa, Tennessee.
America’s Healthcare Advocate Lands In The Volunteer State
Only 28 percent of millennials are enrolling in ObmaCare.  Why?  Could it be the cost of coverage versus the $695 penalty?  In The Wall Street Journal article below you will get a clear understanding of why millennials aren’t enrolling and its impact on the cost of health insurance…  Continue Reading      
A Millennial’s ObamaCare Lament
You can expect sticker shock this year if you’re renewing an ACA ObamaCare plan.  The Wall Street Journal article below explains why insurance carriers are going to be raising premiums and pulling out of the marketplace.  It’s not a pretty picture…                     Continue Reading
Aetna’s ObamaCare Shock
The Sun Came Up Again This Morning
I don’t often post comments on political issues because of my nationally syndicated radio show America’s Healthcare Advocate.  However, today is an exception to that rule.  Right, wrong, left, right, Republican, Democrat or Independent…regardless of what you are or who you are, the American people spoke last night:  loud and clear.  I’m old enough to remember another election when a B movie star and California cowboy was elected the 40th President of the United States.  The pundits all predicted the world would come to an end, that we would have a nuclear exchange with the Soviet Union, and that Barbara Streisand was going to leave the country.  None of  that happened.   What did happen was one of the most prosperous periods in American History which lasted for over ten years because of Ronald Reagan’s policies.  The Berlin wall came down, and the Soviet Union collapsed.  Ronald Wilson Reagan went on to become one of the greatest presidents in the history of this country:  admired by many, even Barack Obama.  Donald Trump is no Ronald Reagan.  He’s not a politician.  He’s a  TV personality and a larger than life figure who connected with the average American (white collar, blue collar, Republican, Democrat or Independent).  And the great wailing and gnashing of teeth from the pundits has already begun.  If you listened to his victory speech last night, you heard a conciliatory tone asking that we all come together as a nation.  I think Hillary Clinton said it best today in her concession speech: “We owe him an open mind and a chance to lead.”  Who knows, perhaps he will exceed all expectations just like Ronald Reagan did.      
Using the budget resolution process, Republicans will move forward with the four committees that control healthcare policy:  two in the Senate and two in the House.  This process requires only 51 senators to be present and vote, therefore eliminating the Democrat minority ability to block the repeal.  The repeal will begin in the form of a reconciliation bill               Continue Reading
The Truth About The Repeal And Replacement of ObamaCare: What Will Really Happen
Republicans in the House and Senate are increasingly talking about repairing and replacing ObamaCare as opposed to swiftly repealing and replacing.  House Speaker Ryan said the discussion of repairing the law wasn’t inconsistent with plans to repeal and replace it.  In reality, the ObamaCare law is two thousand pages of extremely complex healthcare law with over ten thousand pages of actual regulation issued by CMS, Health and Human Services, and the IRS, meaning this is no easy task and will need to be thought out and vetted thoroughly before action is taken or the unintended consequence could result in throwing the individual, family, and employer-sponsored group health insurance market into chaos.  The first thing that needs to happen is a shoring up of the individual and family health insurance market.  This year 9.4 million people enrolled in ObamaCare (that’s 450,000 less than last year) in large part due to skyrocketing premium increases like 116 percent in Arizona, 48 percent in Missouri, and 29 percent in Kansas.  Another contributing factor was United, Aetna, Humana, and Cigna abandoning many individual and family health insurance markets across the country resulting in only one carrier willing to supply coverage (usually Blue Cross and Blue Shield). The GOP wants to steady the individual and family health insurance market to improve access, bring carriers back into the marketplace, and lower premiums.  The Secretary of Health and Human Services, Tom Price, is expected to use the authority President Trump authorized in his executive order on ObamaCare to close loop holes that allow people to game the system obtaining coverage after they are already sick but not signing up during open enrollment.  Other ideas being discussed in both the House and Senate include direct block grants to the state which could reduce costs from the current 20 billion for ObamaCare to 16 billion and allow states to tailor plans to their population’s needs.  Additionally, the 21st Century Cures Act signed by President Obama on December 13 is already in place and could give employers with less than 50 employees more flexibility in the marketplace and would allow them to implement HRA (Health Reimbursement Accounts) for group health insurance giving employers a defined contribution model.  President Trump and Republicans in the House and Senate know they need to get this right and not come out of the gate with something that is ill thought out and badly implemented in the individual, family, and employer/group health insurance marketplace.  They also seek to give relief to employers from the more onerous regulations and taxes imposed under ObamaCare.  Anticipate changes between now and April but don’t expect a complete repeal and replace until the fall of this year, maybe even later. Cary Hall America’s Healthcare Advocate
The Repeal, Replacement, And Repair of ObamaCare
Join me this weekend as I discuss and explore the ever changing world of employer sponsored health insurance. I will explain modules like level premium plans, captive programs and stand-alone self- funded plans. Many of these options are available for groups with as few as 5 employees and can reduce costs by as much as 30% without cost shifting to employees and reducing their benefits! Listen and learn!!!
With the collapse of the Republicans’ plan to repeal and replace Obamacare, employers’ and business owners will probably experience significant premium increases again this year, especially if they are on an ACA plan and have not been grandfathered in.  Having said that, it is imperative for employers to recognize that cost shifting these increases to employees through higher payroll deduction, larger deductibles             Continue Reading
How Small Employers with Under 50 Lives Can Buy Insurance like Costco, Whole Foods and Home Depot
Obamacare House of Cards
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City, the carrier that has provided individual health insurance in Kansas and Missouri for the last 75 years announced last week that they are withdrawing from the ACA/Obamacare marketplace.  This means that 67,000 people will lose coverage by December 31, 2017.  BlueKC was the first carrier approved and in the marketplace under the Affordable Health Care Act, but after losing over $100 million dollars on its Obamacare book of business, they have had enough.          Continue Reading
America’s Healthcare Advocate - Cary Hall On Biz Talk Radio
America’s Healthcare Advocate is an informative national radio broadcast encompassing the entire healthcare landscape.  Discussing topics and interviews with prominent medical experts on topics ranging from genomic gene treatment for lung cancer, breast and colon cancers as well as national experts like Doctor Tracy Steven, Chief Cardiologist at the Muriel Kauffman Women’s Heart Center.
The cost of employer sponsored health insurance continues to increase, and one of the hidden facts that is contributing to rising Insurance costs are employees and dependents that don’t take their prescription medications.  This is also a problem for Medicare recipients and people with individual insurance policies. Often time’s people think that by not taking their medications they are saving money, however,  the long term effects prove just the opposite. Continue Reading