by Chris Huckins Google+ Email 

 

Latest News

20 June 2014

#FelonCrushFriday: How to Get Health Insurance for the Incarcerated

Posted in Latest News

Whether imprisoned for committing Medicare fraud in Los Angeles or forgetting to pay Jabba, chances are you're wondering how to get health insurance when you're released, especially to treat your vision from being Carbonite frozen. 

Obamacare helps criminals for a couple reasons, not to say that's a selling point for insurance agents. To be truthful, the law can't help but bend for Jeremy Meeks and the cast of Orange is the New Black, even if Covered California doesn't tweet #FelonCrushFriday.

Qualifying life events, like being released from incarceration, entitles former prisoners to get health insurance within 60 days of their new found freedom. They must provide release documentation to prove they were ineligible to sign up prior according to Covered California

Prisoners are also exempt from the tax penalty that everyone on the outside without health insurance is subject to. Since prisoners get free healthcare, they don't really need health insurance, especially if their prison wives/husbands protect them from harm in the first place. 

If you're under house arrest, parole, or probation you aren't considered incarcerated under Obamacare, so you can sign up for health insurance. You're also subject to the penalty if you don't. Or just break your parole and ankle alarm, end up in the slammer, and avoid the tax penalty altogether. 

If you're in jail, haven't been sentenced, and are currently eating a continental prison breakfast,  you still can apply for health insurance. Just use your free phone call to dial Haronian Insurance. 

19 June 2014

Optimus Prime Could Uber You Around Los Angeles

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The safest, cheapest auto insurance in Los Angeles may be Autobots. Well that's just prime.

Uber, a transportation company that hires people to use their personal vehicles instead of taxis, just added a new driver to its payroll, Optimus Prime, leader of the Autobots and Shia Lebouf's former chauffeur.

It's a promotion for car insurance, I mean, the latest Transformers movie, Age of Extinction and Uber made the right choice of a good guy over a Dinobot. It also wisely selected the best cities on Earth to "roll out" its publicity stunt: Dallas, Phoenix, and where cars are like cockroaches, Los Angeles.

If you live in LA, you get the chance to ride in Optimus Prime on Saturday June 21 from 1 pm - 7 pm by opening your Uber App, selecting the "Autobots" option, picking a location, and selecting "Roll Out!".

If you're lucky, Optimus will appear in his flaming blue and red Western Star form for a ride that lasts 15 minutes, so cut to the chase and ask him to make the "Chkchoo chkch chck" sound. Note: According to Transformers Wiki, "There is no definitive onomatopoeia for the Transformation noise".

Just when you thought it couldn't get any cooler, Uber recently lowered its rates by 25% in Los Angeles, touting it costs customers 40% less than a taxi ride. The Transformer ride, by the way is free.

While you're deciding where Optimus should take you: Cybertron, Michael Bay's Exploding Guest House, or Walburger's, consider being dropped off at a stranger's house for a homecooked meal through the food equivalent of Uber, EatWith.

It's worth the experience, and who knows, Starscream might make you a quiche.

12 June 2014

900,000 Medi-Cal Applicants Still Don't Have Insurance Cards

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900,000 Medi-Cal Applicants Still Don't Have Insurance Cards

A Veteran Affairs audit revealed patients with individual health insurance in Los Angeles waited an average 56 days for their first doctor's visit. But before you conclude military heroes don't get care in a timely manner, add low income residents to the list too. 

Speaking of lists, a backlog of 900,000 Medi-Cal applicants are still waiting for their insurance cards since enrollments began October, 2013 under the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare).

When Obamacare expanded Medicare qualifications, individuals and families who earn up to 138% of the Federal Poverty Level were newly eligible. That's up to $16,000 gross income for an individual and $27,000 for a family of three.  

Even before Obamacare, 8 million in California were already enrolled in Medi-Cal, the state version of Medicare, and 2.5 million in California were eligible but never enrolled. A UC Berkeley study estimated 1.4 million were newly eligible under the expansion and between 750,000 and 910,000 would enroll by 2019. 

Thanks to delays, the whopping 1.9 million who signed up for Medi-Cal may not be completely enrolled until then.

The reason for so many Medi-Cal enrollees not getting their insurance cards is not surprisingly "Obamacare glitches". But it wasn't the infamous federal site, healthcare.gov at fault this time. Instead California's equivalent, CoveredCA.com, malfunctioned as soon as Medi-Cal enrollees began applying on October 1st, the debut of the website. 

At the time, CoveredCA.com just couldn't communicate with over 58 county social service computers across California that simultaneously verified if someone enrolling for Medi-Cal was eligible and confirmed the county plan selected. The issues weren't resolved until January 21, 2014 and by then, a backlog growing closer to 1 million Medi-Cal applicants were waiting for their Medi-Cal card.

For many, the maximum 45 day waiting period to process their Medi-Cal applications already passed, like their patience. 

Making matters worse, Medi-Cal enrollees may not have received email or mail requests to provide documents that proved their Medi-Cal eligibility. They have a 90 day window to do so but may not have known of the requirement due to website glitches. Without the proof, Medi-Cal won't supply individuals or families with Medi-Care cards. 

Norman Williams, spokesperson for California's Department of Health Care Services assured Medi-Cal applicants that the issue is their top priority, but didn't promise a resolution by the end of June.

If you need help completing your Medi-Cal application or getting your Medi-Cal card, contact a Los Angeles health insurance broker who can cross you and 899,999 more off of the backlog list. 

10 June 2014

Only in America: Kid-Size Bulletproof Blankets for School Shootings

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It's the band-aid of solutions to America's mass shooting epidemic: bulletproof shields that kids bring to school. 

The invention couldn't come sooner as today marks the 74th mass shooting in America since 20 children were slain by a gunman at Sandy Hook Elementary on December 14, 2013. 

Behold this map of all the school shootings since Sandy Hook. 

On that tragic date, politicians were motivated to pass a long overdue bill mandating background checks for gun purchases on the internet and gun shows. On April 17th, 2014 a proposed bill on banning assault weapons was brought to a vote as well. 

Sadly, both gun control bills failed to pass the Senate. 54-46 voted against the background check bill with 41 Republicans and 5 Democrats from states with high gun owner populations voting No. All Republicans except 1 voted against the assault weapons ban proposal. 

Now companies are acting to save the children and not just from school shootings, but natural disasters. From one father in Oklahoma came the idea of a bulletproof blanket his sons could carry to school. Since they hail from Oklahoma, he thought it might as well protect them from tornado debris too.

Steve Walker, father of 2, partnered with ballistics experts to design the "Bodyguard Blanket", which comes in 3 different sizes: child, teenager, and adult, to protect against the inevitable shooting in kindergartens, middle schools, and college campuses, respectively. 

Costing $1000, it's an expensive insurance method to prevent casualties in the classroom. 

If you're a parent who's not a fan of bright orange armor, which may catch the attention of assailants, there's the alternative bulletproof shield from Hardwire which doubles as a white board. It's easily disguised in the classroom to prevent the reminder that at any moment, kids are gonna use their bulletproof blankets in their backpacks. 

George Tunis, CEO of the white board manufacturer, Hardwire, donated 90 bulletproof shields to Worcester Preparatory School in Maryland, where his own kids attend, saving the school an estimated $20,000 - the value of the white boards, and at only $222 each, far cheaper than the Bodyguard Blanket. 

Not every school will experience the same philanthropy, but at a rate of 1.37 school shootings in America per week, some may join the same statistic of gun violence victims. 

At the next school shooting, maybe if enough people share #NotOneMore on their bulletproof white boards it'll remind politicians "not one more" excuse should prevent passing gun control legislation. 

 

03 June 2014

Apple's HealthKit is Basically the Obamacare Microchip Incarnate

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Apple's HealthKit is Basically the Obamacare Microchip Incarnate

The Obamacare microchips were supposed to be mandated implants that monitored everyone's whereabouts, bank accounts, and medical records. That didn't happen because it was a rumor started by chain emails. 

Still, that minor detail didn't stop a minority of people from believing in the microchip mandate and continuing to protest it to this day.

The only problem is a device that monitors all those things already exists and you probably own one. 

Detecting your location and personal information was supposed to be a feature of Obamacare's microchip, but Apple called first dibs. I know a lot of people who update their iPhones regularly, skipping the user agreement that allows Apple to monitor their phone data and geolocation.

Funny how few seem bothered by a device tracking their privacy as long as it doesn't impose their physical space like an implant. Although when are smart phones ever not on our person?

The same terrifying user agreement appears on most apps you agree to download, including Apple's latest app, HealthKit. It debuted at WWDC 2014 (Worldwide Developers Conference) and is the first iPhone health app to keep a comprehensive medical record, like your private health history, while simultaneously monitoring your exercise, calories, sleep, and physical body metrics. That doesn't sound intrusive.

It's not just for iPhone users, though. The database is accessible by healthcare providers who can receive and transmit data regarding your health. It's like Santa Claus reading your Christmas list while you're sleeping... except Healthkit records your sleep schedule simultaneously.

While the application was touted at 2014's Worldwide Developers Conference, no one really cared that HealthKit's activity was comparable to Obamacare's microchip. 

While the Obamacare microchip was a rumor, implantable medical chips do exist. They just aren't mandated under the Affordable Care Act, let alone monitor your location or keep track of your bank account like a phone does. 

When a person implanted with such a device is found unconscious, for example, a simple scan for the chip reveals his or her medical history - helping doctors or ambulance attendants to accurately treat the patient without a stack of paperwork.

HealthKit will work with existing electronic medical record systems, like Epic Systems, which provides over 100 million patients with the same database their doctors use at major hospitals like University of California Los Angeles or Cedars Sinai. 

HealthKit will likely be awesome. It might even help save lives. It isn't the new Obamacare microchip, but simply a reminder of those conspiracy theorists who think they're important enough to be "monitored" by Big Brother. Or Apple.