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What We're Reading: Filling ACA Gaps; Antidepressant Usage; Abortion Access and Restriction


Centene Enters Nevada ACA Market

The number of counties with no insurers offering Affordable Care Act (ACA) health plans is dwindling. Centene will now offer insurance in the 14 Nevada counties that were at risk of having no options in 2018, reported The New York Times. That brings the tally down to just 2 counties without insurers, and only 400 ACA customers live in those counties in Wisconsin and Ohio. Centene is betting big on the ACA, which makes sense since a former Obama administration official who ran the federal marketplaces is now an executive at the insurer.

Popularity of Antidepressants

The number of people using antidepressants is rising. TIME reported that in 2011-2014, 13% of people 12 years and older took an antidepressant in the last month compared with 11% in 2005-2008. The majority of people using antidepressants tend to be taking them over a long period of time: 2 years or more. In addition, women were twice as likely as men to take the medications, which are used to treat depression and anxiety.

States Expanding, Restricting Coverage for Abortion

In Oregon, the governor recently signed a bill to expand coverage on abortions, while in Texas, the governor signed a bill to limit coverage for them. According to AP, the legislation in Oregon was introduced in response to attempts to repeal the ACA, which includes reproductive services as part of the essential health benefits. Nearly half a million dollars will be allocated from Oregon’s general fund over 2 years to expand the coverage. The new law in Texas will require women to buy supplemental insurance if they want coverage for an abortion, reported Reuters. The supplemental coverage will cost $12 to $80 a year and the bill did not offer exceptions for cases of rape or incest.

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