Price-shopping for coffee makers is easy. Finding the actual cost of a colonoscopy? Nearly impossible. But putting together a useful, comprehensive price-list for patients of the widely varying charges for various health procedures is difficult and expensive, states are learning.
Michigan is one of only a handful of Republican-led states that is expanding Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. It did it by forging a plan that worked for Republicans, Democrats and business interests, as well as doctors and hospitals.
Dental coverage is a required benefit for children under the Affordable Care Act. But it's not turning out to be quite that simple. For one thing, there are no federal subsidies to help pay for stand-alone dental policies.
If people have insurance coverage, the theory went, they won't end up in the emergency room as often. But an analysis of Oregon's expansion of Medicaid found that people who gained coverage were 40 percent more likely to go to the emergency room.
People now have until January 10 to pay for their first month of coverage through the health exchanges. But people using the federal exchange still have to get signed up by Dec. 23. Some states have pushed deadlines even later.