BC-MI–Health Overhaul-Michigan Member Project-Advisory, MI

EDITORS:

NEWS DIRECTORS:

The AP Michigan invites you to participate in a statewide member collaboration focused on President Barack Obama’s troubled Affordable Care Act, to be published beginning this Sunday ahead of the act’s Jan. 1 start of health insurance coverage under the law’s new marketplace.

As part of the project we are moving a county-by county list of uninsured numbers to help develop localized stories. If you have any questions, please contact AP Michigan News Editor Roger Schneider at rschneider@ap.org or 313-259-0650.

The project includes two main stories prepared by the AP with photos and glances. They moved Hold for Release on Monday, Dec. 23, and are embargoed until Sunday, Dec. 29, and Monday, Dec. 30, or thereafter depending on your needs. The digest lines for the stories are below.

The first part, to be published Sunday, Dec. 29, or thereafter, focuses on the status of the Affordable Care Act in Michigan. It also includes the county-by-county U.S. Census list and a glance that gives facts about the uninsured.

The second part, to be published Monday, Dec.30, or thereafter, focuses on issues related to rural counties, many of which have a high rate of uninsured and lack of access to health care providers. It also includes a tips box for consumers on buying health insurance.

The project is timely because Jan. 1 is the first day of coverage for the new tax-subsidized insurance plans. While the deadline to get coverage by that date has passed, many thousands of eligible Michigan residents have not chosen a plan and are expected to sign by the end of March when penalties for non-coverage are scheduled to start.

DIGEST LINES:

HEALTH OVERHAUL-MICHIGAN-HFR

LANSING, Mich. — The four-year wait is nearly over for uninsured Michigan residents wanting medical insurance through the 2010 federal health care law. But when coverage kicks in starting Wednesday, it will be many more months or even years before a clear picture emerges of the law’s impact in the state. At most, just tens of thousands of residents will have picked a plan from the new federal health insurance marketplace in time for coverage in January. Many more will wait until getting closer to the end of open enrollment in three months. By David Eggert. SENT: 900 words, photos, moved HFR on Dec. 23 to be published Sunday, Dec. 29 or thereafter. AP is providing a database on the number and rate of uninsured in all Michigamn counties, based on U.S. Census data, for the purpose of localizing the story.

With:

HEALTH OVERHAUL-MICHIGAN-COUNTIES LIST-HFR — A county-by-county list from the U.S. Census that shows the number of uninsured Michigan residents. Moved HFR on Dec. 23 to be published Sunday, Dec. 29 or thereafter.

HEALTH OVERHAUL-MICHIGAN-GLANCE-HFR — Facts about the uninsured. Moved HFR on Dec. 23 to be published Sunday, Dec. 29 or thereafter.

HEALTH OVERHAUL-RURAL MICHIGAN-HFR

DETROIT — The stories of Sanilac, Mackinac and other rural Michigan counties underscore broader challenges in rolling out President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul, which aims to cut the number of uninsured by expanding low-income health coverage and the new insurance marketplaces where people can buy plans. Problems have plagued the website since its October launch, and enrollment still lags behind projections despite improvements. Americans had until last week to sign up for coverage that starts Jan. 1, and many are expected to wait until the last minute. They have until March 31 to find coverage and avoid a penalty for being uninsured next year. By Jeff Karoub. SENT: 870 words, photos, moved HFR on Dec. 23 to be published Monday, Dec. 30 or thereafter.

With:

HEALTH OVERHAUL-MICHIGAN-TIPS-HFR — Tips from experts on buying health insurance under President Barack Obama’s new health care law. Moved HFR on Dec. 23 to be published Monday, Dec. 30 or thereafter.

The AP, Detroit

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