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Nationwide, health insurance participation in the Affordable Care Act’s individual market is growing and increased competition is helping drive down consumer premiums.    In Pennsylvania, UPMC Health Plan is one of eight health insurance providers offering affordable coverage options to more than  400,000 enrollees in 2022.  Through the COVID-19 Special Enrollment Period that ran from February 2021 to August 2021 and thanks to temporary premium subsidies provided through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), the Commonwealth has enrolled more Pennsylvanians in affordable coverage than ever before.
Harrisburg, PA - Following the approval of two vaccines by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and emergency use authorization from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Department of Health says vaccine providers across the state are prepared to begin providing COVID-19 vaccinations for children six months and older beginning early next week.
One of the ways I’ve coped with the COVID-19 pandemic is by looking for the few-and-far-between “silver linings” that have resulted from the event. One such potential silver lining is a lessening of the stigma associated with mental health challenges. Stigma has long plagued seeking, getting access to, and receiving services to help with mental health challenges – everything from seeking short-term counseling for temporarily increased levels of stress and distress to psychiatric treatment for mental health disorders like mood disorders (including depression), anxiety disorders, and addiction.
 In an era where everyone seems to be discussing mental health, it may be time for each of us to do a self inventory. So many of us relate to the faces of depression, the sad, expressionless, apathetic masks worn by so many suffering from Major Depressive Disorder (MDD). However, many of us face the day with a smile, a sustainable routine and attend to all of our daily needs, including work, children, and other needed obligations. Does this mean we are NOT depressed? Or just not “ happy”, “ satisfied” or is this just considered being “content”?