KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Today’s OpEds: Churchillian Berwick?; Government’s Obesity Fight; WSJ On Paying For Health Reform

Radical Reformer Has The Right Message On Medicare The Baltimore Sun
In an ideal world, Berwick would be Medicare's Winston Churchill, a prophetic voice who emerges from the wilderness and ends years of appeasement and denial. He tells the truth about federal health care and medicine generally. It's no wonder the Obama administration didn't think the Senate could handle it (Jay Hancock, 7/11).

Bowdlerizing Berwick The American Spectator
Donald Berwick's views on wealth redistribution, rationing, and the free market are far to the left of mainstream public opinion, and a wide variety of conservative and libertarian health care experts have correctly identified him as a clear and present danger to our medical delivery system. Thus, having abetted the Democrat health care agenda by deliberately hiding the ugliest features of Obamacare, the establishment "news" media are now attempting to sanitize the record of Obama's radical new CMS administrator (David Catron, 7/12).

Who Pays For ObamaCare? The Wall Street Journal
ObamaCare's new "health-care funding plan" will shift some $104 billion in 2016 to Americans in the bottom half of the income distribution from those in the top half. The wealth transfer will be even larger in future years. While every income group sees a direct or indirect tax increase, everyone below the 50th income percentile comes out a net beneficiary. … ObamaCare, in short, is almost certainly the largest wealth transfer in American history (7/12).

When Medicare Refuses To Pay For Health Care North Jersey Media Group
If Medicare refuses to pay for a health care service you received, you can appeal the decision. You have legal rights to get the care you are entitled to regardless of which type of Medicare you have. These rights exist in original Medicare and Medicare private health plans (Irene Card, 7/11).  

Your Health Insurance Will Not Be Taxed Next Year Huffington Post 
There is another email making the rounds that claims that the new health reform law requires that you pay taxes on your employer-sponsored health insurance. It's not true (Linda Bergthold, 7/10).

Help For Damaged Warriors The New York Times
For too long, scores of thousands of veterans afflicted with post-traumatic stress disorder have been denied proper treatment and much-needed help. … The Obama administration has announced new regulations that will eliminate one of the main bureaucratic roadblocks to adequate treatment: the requirement that they document in painstaking, often impossible searches such events as a specific bomb blast or firefight to prove their disability (7/9).

Pinching Ohio's AIDS Funding The [Cleveland] Plain Dealer
With 5,000 people, most of them without jobs, climbing into the life raft for free anti-AIDS drugs and other assistance, the Ohio Department of Health had to do something to make sure that the sickest and poorest come first. Thus, the sobering announcement that, starting this month, people who earn at or above 500 percent of the federal poverty level -- about $54,000 for a single-person household -- will no longer be eligible for aid from the Ryan White program. … Ohio's Ryan White program had leveraged mostly federal money for drug assistance, housing and even transportation for those with HIV and AIDS (7/11).

Government Has Fitting Role In Fat Fight The Hartford Courant
Obesity costs the nation $147 billion per year just in health care costs, half of which are paid for by you, me and every citizen through Medicare and Medicaid. Because of poor diet and obesity, today's children could be the first generation in the nation's history to live shorter lives than their parents did. … Government has the right, responsibility, authority and now the political support to help stand up to the food companies and create policies that offer the country better nutrition conditions. This suggests a bright future (Kelly Brownell, 7/11).

This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.