Making Health Care Work

LOWERING HEALTH CARE COSTS—A pro-consumer health insurance exchange would allow hundreds of thousands of families and businesses to join together and negotiate for cheaper health care plans.

Delivering on the Promise of Quality, Affordable Health Care

Now the fight for health care reform is in Harrisburg, and so are the health care industry’s lobbyists.

At stake is how we set up a new insurance marketplace in Pennsylvania — the single biggest tool we have to clean up health care. The new state insurance exchange will allow small businesses, those of us who buy health care on our own, and the uninsured to shop for cheaper health care plans and find some relief from increasingly brutal premiums. 

Done right, the exchange will save billions and level the balance of power between consumers and the health care industry — driving the industry to cut waste and prioritize high-quality care.

The health care industry has spent millions to influence health care, so they know how high the stakes are.

In order to help us fight back against the kind of price jumps and trap-door coverage we’ve all been suffering, PennPIRG is pushing to see that the exchange:

1) Negotiates for better plans. By demanding better care for less cost, the exchange can use the collective power of hundreds of thousands of Pennsylvanians to finally demand that the industry do better.

2) Have high standards, so that bad plans aren’t an option.

3) Be open to as many Pennsylvanians as possible. Limits that shut some individuals and businesses out of the exchange would reduce its ability to lower costs — and will be a key tactic that industry lobbyists use to weaken it.

4) Be accountable to the public.

Issue updates

Report | PennPIRG | Health Care

TOP TWENTY PAY-FOR-DELAY DRUGS

Americans with cancer, heart disease, epilepsy and other conditions have been forced to pay an average of 10 times more than necessary for at least 20 blockbuster drugs, according to a report released today by Community Catalyst and the Pennsylvania Public Interest Research Group (PennPIRG).

> Keep Reading
News Release | PennPIRG | Health Care

TWENTY TOP GENERIC DRUGS DELAYED BY INDUSTRY PAYOFFS

Too often, consumers are forced to shoulder a heavy financial burden, or even go without needed medicine, due to the high cost of brand-name drugs. Our research indicates that one significant cause is the practice called “pay for delay,” which inflates the drug prices paid by tens of millions of Americans. 

> Keep Reading
News Release | PennPIRG | Health Care

Supreme Court Upholds Health Reform

Today’s decision is good news for consumers. Insurance companies can’t go back to the days of dropping your coverage once you become ill, or denying coverage to sick children. And beginning in 2014, the days of insurers being able to deny anyone coverage for “pre-existing conditions” will be history. 

> Keep Reading
Report | PennPIRG Education Fund and Demos | Health Care

Pennsylvania lives at risk

The United States Congress is currently considering so-called “regulatory reform” legislation that would add new bureaucratic hurdles to stall and, in some cases, stop the creation of new safeguards and standards that hold corporations accountable and protect the public. According to our analysis, the result would be demonstrable harm for the people of Pennsylvania.

> Keep Reading
Result | Health Care

Young People Now Covered

This year, the federal health care reforms that U.S. PIRG worked to win have started to pay off for young people. In the past, teens saw their premiums soar or were denied coverage when they turned 19, even if they’d been insured their whole lives. Now, they can remain on their parents’ plans until age 26.

> Keep Reading

Pages

News Release | PennPIRG | Health Care

TWENTY TOP GENERIC DRUGS DELAYED BY INDUSTRY PAYOFFS

Too often, consumers are forced to shoulder a heavy financial burden, or even go without needed medicine, due to the high cost of brand-name drugs. Our research indicates that one significant cause is the practice called “pay for delay,” which inflates the drug prices paid by tens of millions of Americans. 

> Keep Reading
News Release | PennPIRG | Health Care

Supreme Court Upholds Health Reform

Today’s decision is good news for consumers. Insurance companies can’t go back to the days of dropping your coverage once you become ill, or denying coverage to sick children. And beginning in 2014, the days of insurers being able to deny anyone coverage for “pre-existing conditions” will be history. 

> Keep Reading
News Release | Health Care

Nationwide study of new health exchanges shows Pennsylvania how to lower costs for consumers

Philadelphia, PA – Many states are creating health exchanges to deliver better value for consumers, and Pennsylvania should follow their lead, according to Making the Grade, a new report by PennPIRG. Health exchanges are competitive marketplaces that can empower individuals and small businesses with better, more affordable options for coverage.  Under the federal health reform law, each state will have an exchange up and running in 2014.

> Keep Reading
News Release | Health Care

As Passage of Health Bill Nears, New Estimates of Pennsylvania Job Gains From Lower Premiums

WASHINGTON, DC – As Congress and the White House are locked in the final negotiations over the health care reform bill, a new analysis from the consumer group Pennsylvania Public Interest Research Group finds that the legislation will mean between 11,400 and 18,300 more jobs in Pennsylvania.  With job losses now the central economic issue confronting America, the analysis shows that the health care cost savings the bill will achieve will help businesses add new employees.

> Keep Reading
News Release | Health Care

Senate Makes History on Final Health Reform Votes

Inaction by Congress and the power of the health care industry have allowed health care costs to spiral out of control and enabled insurance companies to run roughshod over consumers for decades ... until now.

> Keep Reading

Pages

Result | Health Care

Young People Now Covered

This year, the federal health care reforms that U.S. PIRG worked to win have started to pay off for young people. In the past, teens saw their premiums soar or were denied coverage when they turned 19, even if they’d been insured their whole lives. Now, they can remain on their parents’ plans until age 26.

> Keep Reading
Result | Health Care

Young People Now Covered

This year, the federal health care reforms that PennPIRG worked to win have started to pay off for young people. In the past, teens saw their premiums soar or were denied coverage when they turned 19, even if they’d been insured their whole lives. Now, they can remain on their parents’ plans until age 26. 

> Keep Reading
Report | PennPIRG | Health Care

TOP TWENTY PAY-FOR-DELAY DRUGS

Americans with cancer, heart disease, epilepsy and other conditions have been forced to pay an average of 10 times more than necessary for at least 20 blockbuster drugs, according to a report released today by Community Catalyst and the Pennsylvania Public Interest Research Group (PennPIRG).

> Keep Reading
Report | PennPIRG Education Fund and Demos | Health Care

Pennsylvania lives at risk

The United States Congress is currently considering so-called “regulatory reform” legislation that would add new bureaucratic hurdles to stall and, in some cases, stop the creation of new safeguards and standards that hold corporations accountable and protect the public. According to our analysis, the result would be demonstrable harm for the people of Pennsylvania.

> Keep Reading
Report | PennPIRG Education Fund | Health Care

Making the Grade

When it comes to health care, there are few magic-bullet solutions for the many problems consumers face in the marketplace: insurers don’t compete for their business, leading to higher prices and lower quality. Important information about coverage is buried in the fine print, making it hard to know what’s really covered or which plan is right. And costs are continuing their unsustainable rise.

> Keep Reading
Report | PennPIRG Education Fund | Health Care

The Young Person's Guide to Health Insurance

Starting this year, under the new health care law, young people will gain access to new, previously unavailable health insurance options. To make the most of those new choices, you need to learn the facts. This guide is designed to help you do that.

> Keep Reading
Report | PennPIRG Education Fund | Health Care

Delivering on the Promise

The recently passed federal health care reform law will make significant changes in how health insurance and health care work for consumers, businesses, and local and state governments, as well as how insurers and providers operate. But whether Americans experience improved care, lower costs and greater access depends largely on what happens next.

> Keep Reading

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