Friday, November 28th, 2014

Promise Kept rulings on The Obameter

Expand eligibility for Medicaid

"Expand eligibility for the Medicaid and SCHIP programs and ensure that these programs continue to serve their critical safety net function."

Expand eligibility for State Children's Health Insurance Fund (SCHIP)

"Expand eligibility for the Medicaid and SCHIP programs and ensure that these programs continue to serve their critical safety net function."

Phase in requirements for health information technology

"Phase in requirements for full implementation of health IT and commit the necessary federal resources."

Require health plans to disclose how much of the premium goes to patient care

"Require health plans to disclose the percentage of premiums that actually goes to paying for patient care as opposed to administrative costs."

Establish an independent health institute to provide accurate and objective information

"Establish an independent institute to guide reviews and research on comparative effectiveness to provide accurate and objective information."

Implement and fund proven health intervention programs

Implement and fund "evidence-based interventions, such as patient navigator programs." A patient navigator is someone specifically designated to guide patients and their families through the complexities of the health care system.

In non-competitive markets, force insurers to pay out a reasonable share of their premiums for patient care

In markets where the insurance business is not competitive, "force insurers to pay out a reasonable share of their premiums for patient care instead of keeping exorbitant amounts for profits and administration."

Eliminate the higher subsidies to Medicare Advantage plans

"Eliminate the excessive subsidies to Medicare Advantage plans and pay them the same amount it would cost to treat the same patients under regular Medicare."

Work with schools to create more healthful environments for children

"Work with schools to create more healthful environments for children, including assistance with contract policy development for local vendors, grant support for school-based health screening programs and clinical services, increased financial support for physical education, and educational programs for students."

Expand funding to train primary care providers and public health practitioners

"Expand funding—including loan repayment, adequate reimbursement, grants for training curricula, and infrastructure support to improve working conditions— to ensure a strong workforce that will champion prevention and public health activities."

Increase funding to expand community based prevention programs

"Increase funding to expand community based preventive interventions to help Americans make better choices to improve their health."

Improve recruitment of public health workers

Government "at all levels should lead the effort to develop a national and regional strategy for public health … government must invest in workforce recruitment."

Modernize public health buildings

Government "must invest in ... modernizing our physical structures, particularly our public health laboratories."

Increase participation in cancer-related clinical trials

"Will seek to increase participation in clinical trials to 10 percent of adult cancer patients by requiring coverage of patient clinical trial costs in the new public and private plans offered through the National Health Insurance Exchange, increasing NCI reimbursement for patient participation in clinical research and requesting the NCI Director to identify regulatory barriers that prevent the timely implementation and completion of successful clinical trials."

Commission a study on students with disabilities and their transition to jobs or higher education

"There has not been a comprehensive study of evaluating access to higher education or transition to the workforce by students with disabilities. As president, Barack Obama will initiate such a study and task his Secretary of Education with researching: the barriers that keep students with disabilities from seeking and completing higher education; the barriers that prevent students from making a direct transition to work; the extent to which students with disabilities are able to access loans and grants; reasons college students with disabilities drop out at a higher rate; and best practices from schools that have effectively recruited and graduated students with disabilities that can be implemented more widely."

Reinstate executive order to hire an additional 100,000 federal employees with disabilities within five years.

"Obama will reinstate Executive Order No. 13173 which President Clinton issued just before he left office. Executive Order No. 13173 failed to achieve its mandate of hiring an additional 100,000 federal employees with disabilities within five years. Obama will issue this executive order early in his first term and designate a senior White House official to assure that all federal departments and agencies meet the mandate."

Set goals and timetables for implementing Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act

"Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act requires the federal government and employers who are federal contractors to 'take affirmative action to employ and advance in employment qualified individuals with disabilities.' Yet, affirmative action in employment for adults with disabilities is not enforced with goals and timetables like the affirmative action requirements for people of color and women found in Executive Order No. 11246 and its progeny. As a result, affirmative action under the Rehabilitation Act is largely ineffective. Barack Obama will direct his Secretary of Labor to make changes to the regulations implementing Section 503 so that they more closely resemble those implementing Executive Order No. 11246."

Create a best practices list for private businesses in accommodating workers with disabilities

"As president, Barack Obama will direct his Secretary of Labor, the Labor Department's Office of Disability Employment Policy, and its Job Accommodation Network to bring together employers, employer associations, human resources professionals, disability advocates, service providers, and the labor movement to identify, promote, and disseminate best practices in accommodating workers with disabilities."

Launch educational initiative for employers on tax benefits of hiring employees with disabilities

"The tax code already contains several provisions designed to encourage employers to hire employees with disabilities, including the Disabled Access Tax Credit, a Tax Deduction for Architectural and Transportation Barrier Removal, and the Work Opportunity Tax Credit. Yet, very few employers actually take advantage of these credits. Barack Obama and Joe Biden will launch an aggressive effort to educate employers about these tax benefits so that more employers use them to hire greater numbers of employees with disabilities."

Increase the Veterans Administration budget to recruit and retain more mental health professionals

Increase "the VA budget to recruit and retain more mental health professionals."