Single-Payer Health Care System?

Posted on 04/1/2014 by | AARP Blog Author | Comments

Health & Wellbeing Lacking a health insurance marketplace, the U.S. Virgin Islands is considering a legislative proposal to create a single-payer health care system. Nearly 30 percent of Virgin Islanders are uninsured, putting local hospitals under financial strain and leading many individuals to forgo preventive care. The proposal calls for creating a $400 million VI HealthCare program to cover all residents. Proponents say it could be financed with a 5 percent retail sales tax, a 5 percent employee income tax and a 10 …

Single Payer Program for the VI

New Health Care Plan Being Proposed

Posted on 03/26/2014 by | AARP Virgin Islands | Comments

Health & Wellbeing In recent comments, the VI Legislature’s Health Committee Chair referenced an alternative single payer health insurance option for uninsured persons in the Virgin Islands. The single payer option was generated by a group of concerned citizens in response to the VI not having a health care exchange.  Their proposal, if passed by the Legislature, could mean health coverage for visits to doctors, clinics and hospitals for many people who have not had this opportunity. The 24-page draft bill, (the Virgin …

GESC March Board Meeting Highlights

Highlights from the March, Government Employees Service Commission (Health Insurance) Board Meeting

Posted on 03/26/2014 by | AARP Virgin Islands | Comments

Health & Wellbeing With only three months of data for the Virgin Islands government employees on their books, United Health Care (UHC) officials had some surprising news for members of the Government Employees Service Commission (GESC) at their March monthly meeting held on St. Croix. UHC became the supplemental insurance carrier in October 2013 when the Virgin Islands Government made the decision to separate the age 65+ members from the pre-65 group being serviced by CIGNA. UHC has also been doing business in …

Health Information Network launched in the VI

AARP VI Contributed to Launch of HIE

Posted on 03/26/2014 by | AARP Virgin Islands | Comments

Health & Wellbeing After four years of territory-wide cooperation, the VI Department of Health has finished its organizational work and launched a Health Information Exchange (HIE) Network that will enable all health providers in the Virgin Islands to rapidly and securely share medical records electronically. “Four years ago,” stated Denyce Singleton, AARP VI State Director, “AARP VI was appointed by Governor John De Jongh to the HIE Steering Team. We have since occupied one of the pivotal seats at the HIE organizational table. …

AARP VI Members save on prescriptions in the VI

AARP Virgin Islands Residents Saved $1,597,091 on Prescription Drugs in 2013 Under the Affordable Care Act

Posted on 03/24/2014 by | AARP Virgin Islands | Comments

Health & Wellbeing CHRISTIANSTED, VI —The numbers are in, and they are impressive – Virgin Islands residents on Medicare saved $1,597,091 on their prescription drugs in 2013, thanks to the closing of the “donut hole” for prescriptions under the Affordable Care Act – or an average discount per beneficiary of $844.00. Nationally, 7.9 million people who are on Medicare have saved over $9.927 billion on prescription drugs under the Affordable Care Act and its provision closing the “donut hole,” the gap in Medicare …

Medicaid Expansion: A Partial Fix for the Uninsured

Medicaid Expansion: A Partial Fix for the Uninsured

Posted on 11/1/2013 by | AARP Blog Author | Comments

Health & Wellbeing The U.S. Virgin Islands—which is not required under the Affordable Care Act to participate in a health insurance exchange—has decided instead to expand its Medicaid program. As a result, the number of local beneficiaries is expected to increase from about 8,500 to more than 20,000. The territory could receive as much as $274 million in federal funds to expand Medicaid through September 2019. Still, it’s not the “perfect fix for all our health care challenges,” said Denyce Singleton, AARP state …