Ashley Alman: A Boy Who Asked Obama About Stem Cell Research In 2007 Writes To Say It Saved His Life
A young cancer survivor sent President Barack Obama a moving letter thanking him for keeping a promise made during a 2007 campaign stop — a promise the boy says saved his life. Gavin Nore, a teen from Fort Dodge, Iowa, told Obama in a letter shared by the White House Tuesday that he’d had the opportunity to meet the president during his first presidential campaign.
At the time, Nore asked Obama whether he’d continue stem cell research during his presidency, to which the president responded he would. In February 2013, Nore was diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma. He was 14 years old. Nore said he was “cancer free” by that summer, but was later re-diagnosed. “I had to have a stem cell transplant. I beat the battle once again,” Nore wrote to the president. “I would like to thank you very much for continuing the research. If the research haden’t [sic] continued, I wouldn’t be here today.”
Stephen Feller: Study: Higher Number Of Americans Insured Because Of ObamaCare
A review of data on community health centers shows large increases in the number of people who have gained access to healthcare as a result of the Affordable Care Act, especially in underserved urban and rural areas of the United States. Researchers pin much of the credit to the expansion of Medicaid under the ACA, also referred to as ObamaCare, which has allowed people who cannot afford health insurance to have greater access to care.
They note, though, that there has also been a large increase in the number people who have purchased private insurance through the ACA-mandated state exchanges. “Our findings underscore the importance of the Affordable Care Act to the poorest Americans,” said Dr. Sara Rosenbaum, a professor of health law and policy at George Washington University, in a press release. “This report shows the importance of ensuring that the ACA’s resources reach all medically underserved communities, including those in the 20 states that have not yet expanded Medicaid.”
President Barack Obama talks with Ben Rhodes, Deputy National Security Advisor for Strategic Communications, regarding a statement on Iraq and the situation in Ferguson, Missouri, in Chilmark, Martha’s Vineyard, Mass., Aug. 14, 2014. Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Jr. listens, at right. At left, National Security Advisor Susan E. Rice talks with Anita Breckenridge, Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations. Photo by Pete Souza)
LIVE NOW: Secretary of State John Kerry Speaks at the Opening Ceremony for U.S. Embassy Havana
But Obama’s primary message was one of certainty. “Of all the foreign policy issues that I’ve addressed since I’ve been president,” he said, “I’ve never been more certain that this is sound policy, that it’s the right thing to do for the United States, that it’s the right thing to do for our allies.” In terms of decisions I make, I do think that I have a better sense of how military action can result in unintended consequences. And I am confirmed in my belief that much of the time, we are making judgments based on percentages, and no decision we make in foreign policy — or for that matter, any policy — is completely without hair on it, which is how we kind of describe it. I mean, there are always going to be some complications. But that’s why, when I say that this to me is not a close call, I say that based on having made a lot of tough calls. So if you look at Libya, I was deeply concerned about what would happen after [Libyan leader Moammar] Gadhafi was gone.
I was deeply concerned about the ability of some of our European partners who were forward-leaning on that issue to sustain their efforts. We organized the campaign in such a way that I could guarantee they had to step up, and it wasn’t just riding on our coattails to get it done, and that there was broad international support. And to this day, I would say that, had we not gone after Gadhafi, you’d have some version of what happened in Syria in Libya, because he had already lost control of big chunks of the country. But even factoring all that stuff in, Libya is still a mess right now. And so maybe at the same time as I’m more confident today, I’m also more humble. And that’s part of the reason why when I see a situation like this one, where we can achieve an objective with a unified world behind us, and we preserve our hedge against it not working out, I think it would be foolish — even tragic — for us to pass up on that opportunity.
President Barack Obama addresses a town hall meeting on health care insurance reform inside a hangar at Gallatin Field in Belgrade, Mont., on Aug. 14, 2009. Photo by Pete Souza
President Barack Obama confers with Ben Rhodes, Deputy National Security Advisor for Strategic Communications, and Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Jr., right, regarding a statement on Iraq and the situation in Ferguson, Missouri, in Chilmark, Martha’s Vineyard, Mass., August 14, 2014. Anita Breckenridge, Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, stands in the background at left. Photo by Pete Souza
Members of the audience listen as President Barack Obama addresses a town hall meeting on health care insurance reform inside a hangar at Gallatin Field in Belgrade, Mont., on Aug. 14, 2009. Photo by Pete Souza
A young girl in the audience as President Barack Obama addresses a town hall meeting on health care insurance reform inside a hangar at Gallatin Field in Belgrade, Mont., on Aug. 14, 2009. Photo by Pete Souza
President Barack Obama points to a questioner during a town hall meeting on health care insurance reform inside a hangar at Gallatin Field in Belgrade, Mont., on Aug. 14, 2009. Photo by Samantha Appleton
President Barack Obama works a rope line following after his town hall on health care insurance reform inside a hangar at Gallatin Field in Belgrade, Mont., on Aug. 14, 2009. Photo by Pete Souza
President Barack Obama meets with Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer following a town hall meeting on health care insurance reform in Belgrade, Montana, on Aug. 14, 2009. Photo by Pete Souza
President Barack Obama plays basketball during a visit to the McIntosh family farm in Missouri Valley, Iowa, Aug. 13, 2012. The President toured a cornfield on the family farm to view the effect the drought is having on crops. Photo by Pete Souza
The number of people without health insurance has declined by 15.8 million since ObamaCare’s coverage expansion took effect, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The National Health Interview Survey finds that the number of uninsured people has declined from 44.8 million in 2013, before ObamaCare’s coverage expansion took effect, to 29 million in the first quarter of 2015. The uninsured rate fell from 14.4 percent in 2013 to 9.2 percent in 2015, according to the CDC.
The CDC report follows other studies that have found similar drops in the uninsured rate under ObamaCare. The Obama administration estimated in March that 16.4 million people had gained coverage under the law, using Gallup survey data. On Monday, Gallup released a survey showing the uninsured rate had fallen from 17.3 percent in 2013 to 11.7 percent. The survey also found that there are now seven states with uninsured rates at or below 5 percent: Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Vermont, Minnesota, Iowa, Connecticut and Hawaii. Before this year, only Massachusetts had a rate that low.
President Barack Obama talks with farmers during a tour of the McIntosh family farm to view the effects of the drought, in Missouri Valley, Iowa, Aug. 13, 2012. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, foreground, joins the President. Photo by Pete Souza
First Lady Michelle Obama and U.S. Olympic gymnast Gabby Douglas discuss the 2012 Summer Olympic Games during an appearance on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” at the Tonight Show Studio in Burbank, Calif., Aug. 13, 2012. Photo by Sonya N. Hebert
President Barack Obama delivers remarks during an Iftar dinner celebrating Ramadan in the State Dining Room of the White House, Aug. 13, 2010. Photo by Pete Souza
President Barack Obama listens to National Security Advisor General James Jones, second from left, during a meeting in the Situation Room of the White House, on Aug. 13, 2009. Photo by Pete Souza
President Barack Obama talks with Senior Advisor David Alexrod on the Colonnade of the White House on Aug. 13, 2009. Photo by Pete Souza
President Barack Obama plays basketball at the McIntosh family farm in Missouri Valley, Iowa, Aug. 13, 2012. The President toured a cornfield on the farm to view the effect the drought is having on crops. Photo by Pete Souza
Obamacare is attracting younger and healthier people to its coverage plans this year, according to research by Express Scripts Holding Co., a trend that could help balance and sustain the law’s insurance markets. According to the report, which looked at people enrolled in drug coverage administered by Express Scripts, drug costs were 36 percent lower than in 2014.
People in the exchange plans were also younger by almost four years than those who signed up for 2014, Express Scripts said. Insurance markets depend on a mix of people paying premiums to subsidize the medical costs of others when they fall ill. To be sustainable over time, Obamacare will have to attract enough healthy people to keep coverage affordable.
Laura Bassett: White House Finds Way Around Hobby Lobby Birth Control Decision
The Obama administration on Friday issued its final rules for employers who morally object to covering birth control in their health insurance plans. The accommodation ensures that all employed women, unless they work for a place of worship, will still have their birth control covered at no cost to them, even if their employers refuse to cover it. Under the new rule, a closely held for-profit company that objects to covering contraception in its health plan can write a letter to the Department of Health and Human Services stating its objection.
HHS will then notify a third-party insurer of the company’s objection, and the insurer will provide birth control coverage to the company’s female employees at no additional cost to the company. “Women across the country should have access to preventive services, including contraception,” HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell said in a statement. “At the same time, we recognize the deeply held views on these issues, and we are committed to securing women’s access to important preventive services at no additional cost under the Affordable Care Act, while respecting religious beliefs.”
Dick Meyer: Mr. President, On Behalf Of An Ungrateful Nation, Thank You
I’ve never written a column like this. Readers rarely believe it, but I am not on any political team. Generosity toward the high and mighty isn’t among my few virtues. But this needs to be said: Americans are lucky to have Barack Obama as president and we should wake up and appreciate it while we can. President Obama will go down in history as an extraordinary president, probably a great one. He will have done this in era that doesn’t aggrandize leaders and presidents, but shrinks them. All presidents have had profound opposition, vicious enemies and colossal failures. A few were beloved and others deeply respected in their day, but none in the modern era and certainly not Obama.
One can hate Democrats, disagree with Obama on big issues, dislike his style or be disappointed the excitement of his election didn’t last. But his accomplishments, ambitious goals, dignity and honesty under tough circumstances demand admiration and appreciation. 1. The Iran deal: Time will reveal if the deal worked, not today’s talking/tweeting heads. What cannot be in dispute is this was a momentous initiative, a gutsy political risk, a diplomatic success and, potentially, a giant step in defusing a long-ticking time bomb. 2. Obamacare: In the midst of the worst economy since the Great Depression, Obama delivered one of the most important domestic programs since the New Deal. Only LBJ’s Great Society laws compare. Obamacare has survived two challenges in the Supreme Court and constant, kabuki-style congressional votes to repeal. It’s now off life support. Key goals are being met. It will evolve and improve. One day it will be taken for granted and people will say, “Keep the government out of my Obamacare.”
President Barack Obama speaks at the University of Wisconsin at La Crosse, in La Crosse, Wisconsin, about the economy and to promote a proposed Labor Department rule that would make more workers eligible for overtime
President Barack Obama speaks at a press conference with Vice President Joe Biden in the Rose Garden. President Obama announced that Cuba and the United States would re-establish diplomatic ties, including an exchange of ambassadors and embassies
Hello from Nashville! I'll be answering your questions on health care and the Affordable Care Act at 3:30pm ET. Tweet yours using #AskPOTUS.
President Barack Obama receives applause from Kelly Bryant as she introduces him to speak about the Affordable Care Act during a visit to Taylor Stratton Elementary School in Nashville, Tennessee. Bryant is a breast cancer survivor who wrote Obama a letter to tell of her positive experience with the Affordable Care Act
President Barack Obama speaks about the Affordable Care Act. The president said he wants to refocus on improving health care quality, expanding access and rooting out waste now that the Supreme Court has upheld a key element of his health care law
President Barack Obama walks with Kelly Bryant after arriving at her home to take her to the event where he was to speak about the Affordable Care Act during a visit to Taylor Stratton Elementary School
A woman photographs an autograph left by President Barack Obama on a wall at Taylor Stratton Elementary School
Sarah Kliff: Under Obamacare, America’s Uninsured Rate Has Fallen 35 Percent
14.1 million Americans have gained health plans since Obamacare’s coverage expansion began in 2014.
An additional 2.3 million young adults gained coverage between 2010 and 2013 — after Obamacare began requiring employer plans to offer dependent coverage through age 26. Federal officials say this is the largest drop in the uninsured rate since 1965, when Medicare and Medicaid began.
A new report from Health and Human Services finds that the uninsured rate has fallen from 20.3 percent prior to the health-care law down to 13.2 percent at the start of 2015. This is a 7.1 percentage-point decrease in the uninsured rate — or, to put it another way, a 35-percent decline in the number of Americans who lack insurance coverage. “Nothing since the implementation of Medicare and Medicaid has come close to this kind of change,” says Richard Frank, assistant secretary for evaluation and planning at Health and Human Services.
President Barack Obama flanked by Vice President Joe Biden, gives a statement on the Supreme Court health care decision in the Rose Garden at the White House. The Supreme Court upheld the ObamaCare subsidies for customers in states that do not operate their own exchanges in a 6-3 ruling
President Barack Obama tells Vice President Joe Biden a joke