Latest Xavier Becerra News

As omicron surges, HealthCare.gov sign-up deadline arrives

Jan. 13, 2022 19:50 PM EST

People looking for health insurance in the grip of the omicron surge have through Saturday to sign up for taxpayer-subsidized private coverage under the Obama-era Affordable Care Act. President Joe Biden's administration is on track is to deliver robust enrollment numbers, but those...

Medicare limits coverage of $28,000-a-year Alzheimer's drug

Jan. 11, 2022 20:45 PM EST

WASHINGTON (AP) — Medicare said Tuesday it will limit coverage of a $28,000-a-year Alzheimer’s drug whose benefits have been widely questioned, a major development in the nation’s tug-of-war over the fair value of new medicines that offer tantalizing possibilities but come with prohibitive...

Home COVID tests to be covered by insurers starting Saturday

Jan. 10, 2022 21:46 PM EST

WASHINGTON (AP) — Starting Saturday, private health insurers will be required to cover up to eight home COVID-19 tests per month for people on their plans. The Biden administration announced the change Monday as it looks to lower costs and make testing for the virus more convenient amid rising...

Medicare told to reassess premium hike for Alzheimer's drug

Jan. 10, 2022 12:13 PM EST

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. health secretary Xavier Becerra on Monday ordered Medicare to reassess a big premium increase facing millions of enrollees this year, attributed in large part to a pricey new Alzheimer's drug with questionable benefits. Becerra's directive came days after...

Nursing home workers are urged to get boosters as cases soar

Dec. 30, 2021 14:29 PM EST

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal health officials on Thursday pressed nursing home workers to get their booster shots amid a spike in COVID-19 cases among staffers and a concerning lag in booster vaccination for residents and staff. The omicron variant "is lightning fast, and we can't...

988 suicide phone hotline getting $282M to ease July launch

Dec. 20, 2021 11:31 AM EST

WASHINGTON (AP) — People in crisis and those trying to help them will have a new phone number — 988 — to reach the national suicide prevention network starting in July. On Monday, federal health officials announced more than $280 million to smooth the transition from the current 10-digit...

Justice Department asks high court to allow vaccine mandate

Dec. 16, 2021 20:10 PM EST

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration late Thursday asked the Supreme Court to block lower court orders that are keeping President Joe Biden's vaccine mandate for health care workers from going into effect in about half of the states. The administration asked the justices to...

Deadline time for HealthCare.gov coverage that starts Jan. 1

Dec. 15, 2021 05:50 AM EST

WASHINGTON (AP) — Consumers seeking government-subsidized health insurance for next year have through Wednesday to sign up if they want their new plan to start Jan. 1. Independent experts say HealthCare.gov's sign-up season doesn't seem to be drawing as many new customers this year...

A retro feel to Biden's plan for covering OTC virus testing

Dec. 15, 2021 05:41 AM EST

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration’s plan for health insurers to reimburse consumers for over-the-counter COVID-19 tests echoes a bygone era when the companies processed large volumes of claims from individuals — with paper receipts. It’s unclear if the buy-first,...

Medicare urged to flex its power and slash back premium hike

Dec. 13, 2021 14:33 PM EST

WASHINGTON (AP) — The head of a Senate panel that oversees Medicare says the Biden administration should use its legal authority to cut back a hefty premium increase soon hitting millions of enrollees, as a growing number of Democratic lawmakers call for action amid worries over rising inflation....