KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

How Obamacare Affects Children, Prisoners

Media reports explore how the health law requires that dental and vision care benefits for children be included in policies sold through new online insurance marketplaces and how the law may shift prisoners' health care costs from local jurisdictions to the federal government. Other outlets track congressional oversight of the IRS' role in enforcing the law's requirement that most people carry insurance.

Reuters: Congressional Panel To Review U.S. IRS Progress On Health Care Law
The U.S. Internal Revenue Service executive in charge of enforcing President Barack Obama's new health care law will be the lone witness on Wednesday before a congressional panel run by Republicans resolutely opposed to the law. As if that were not daunting enough, Sarah Hall Ingram also likely will be questioned by Republicans about her previous IRS job (Temple-West, 10/8).

Kaiser Health News: FAQ: Dental And Vision Care Part Of 'Essential Benefits' For Kids
One part of the Affordable Care Act is intended to improve dental coverage for children, an extension of efforts by public health advocates that followed the 2007 death of a Maryland boy named Deamonte Driver, who was killed by a bacterial infection that spread from an abscessed tooth to his brain (Evans, 10/9).

The Washington Post: Google Wants To Make You Immortal (And Obamacare Will Pay For It)
Google unveiled its new anti-aging initiative, Calico, to much fanfare last month. The exclusive story of "Can Google Solve Death?" was splashed across the cover of TIME magazine while tech bloggers scrambled to figure out the true meaning of Google's "strange or speculative" new venture. To hear Google execs tell the story, Calico aims at nothing less than extending human life spans by 100 years or more. Given enough time, Google might even defy the aging process and make us immortal. And, the brilliance of all this is that President Obama’s Affordable Care Act may end up making this possible within our lifetime (Basulto, 10/8).

CBS News: Scams Take Advantage Of Obamacare Confusion
You should be on your guard -- and be ready to mentor other, less-informed friends and family in ways to avoid fraud and scams as well. As personal finance blog Wisebread recently wrote, there are a slew of ways that criminals are trying to profit from people's ignorance and fear. Here are some things to watch out for (Johnson, 10/9).

Fox News: Obamacare To Shift Costs Of Some Prisoner Health Coverage From States To Feds
The Eighth Amendment guarantees adequate medical care for prisoners -- often an expensive undertaking because many battle addiction and have serious mental health issues. Currently, counties and states pay for that care. But in January, when the Affordable Care Act expands Medicaid coverage to men living below the poverty line, the cost of this care shifts to the feds. "That's one of the reason why you're seeing a lot of Republican governors support the Medicaid expansion because for them, it's a fiscal windfall," said Avik Roy, a senior fellow with the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research. "They will be able to offload these costs to the federal government that currently they're paying for." State and county prisoners who need acute care outside a prison facility can also have that cost reimbursed by Medicaid (Chrise, 10/9).

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