Health Care Legislation Heading To Supreme Court

This Friday marks the two year anniversary of the Affordable Care Act- President Obama’s health care overall. Its birthday present will be a trip to the Supreme Court next week. Justices will hear arguments on whether two aspects of the law are constitutional- the individual mandate requiring citizens to purchase health insurance and the Medicaid expansion. Alaska is one of 26 states suing to overturn the law. But the state has also benefited from the Affordable Care Act.

John Hammarlund is Regional administrator for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. He points to several health care changes that have happened in Alaska because of the law.

This story is part of a reporting partnership that includes APRN, NPR and Kaiser Health News.

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Lori Townsend is the News Director for Alaska Public Media. She has worked in print and broadcast journalism for nearly 30 years. Radio brought her to Alaska, where she worked as a broadcast trainer for Native fellowship students at Koahnic Broadcasting before accepting a reporting/host position with APRN in 2003. APRN merged with Alaska Public Media a year later. Through her freelance work, she has produced news and feature stories nationally and internationally for Independent Native News, National Native News, NPR , Pacifica, Monitor Radio, Radio Netherlands and AIROS. Townsend is the recipient of numerous awards for her work from the Alaska Press Club, the Native American Journalists Association and a gold and a silver reel award from the National Federation of Community Broadcasters. 

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