KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

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State And Local Views: Senate GOP Health Bill ‘Fundamentally Wrong;’ Devastating To Rural Families

Editorial pages across the country take a hard look at the Senate GOP health care plan and examine their own senators' roles in the debate and the current proposal's local impact.

St. Louis Post-Dispatch: New GOP Healthcare Bill Is As Fundamentally Wrong As All The Others
The fifth iteration of congressional Republicans’ health care bill — two from the House, three from the Senate — is likely to be the last one for a while. If the Senate passes it this week, the House will surely go along. If it fails, Republican leaders appear ready to throw up their hands and work with Democrats to fix the Affordable Care Act rather than replace it. That would be the best outcome. Version 5.0 suffers from the same basic problem as its four predecessors: At its heart, it’s really an attempt by the well-off to cut spending for the less fortunate. Fundamentally, it is an attack on Medicaid, the federal-state program for the poor, the disabled, children and nursing home patients. (7/15)

Cleveland Plain Dealer: Senate Health Reform Bill Would Devastate Family Health Care In Ohio
As a practicing physician, I have seen firsthand how my patients have benefited from the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and Medicaid expansion, especially many patients in traditionally underserved communities such as those who are low-income or live in rural areas. The ACA and Medicaid have been critical sources of health coverage for these patients, increasing their access to many basic health care services, including maternity care, preventive health services, mental health care, and treatment for substance use disorder. (Wayne Trout, 7/16)

Lexington Herald Leader: Will Health-Care Repeal Drive Ky. Families Off Their Farms?
My husband, John, and I farm on land outside Versailles that has been in his family for generations. Over the years, it has produced tobacco, cattle and hay, and now pastured livestock for meat, organic vegetables and flowers. Farming is a calling we actively chose. We worked hard to gain the knowledge and skills we’d need. We expected the hard work, but we weren’t adequately prepared for the challenges presented by health care. (Sue Churchill, 7/14)

The Des Moines Register: Iowa Poll Shows GOP In A Corner On Health Care
No wonder Republicans in Congress are tying themselves in knots as they try to pass health care reform. In Iowa, at least, they have created a no-win situation, results of the new Iowa Poll indicate. Sen. Chuck Grassley, an Iowa Republican, warned on Twitter last weekend that Senate Republicans would face dire consequences if they didn’t pass health care reform. (Kathie Obradovich, 7/16)

Arizona Republic: Obamacare Has One Last (And Best) Defense
The Affordable Care Act has flaws that require fixing, but it continues to serve the people of this nation in ways that many are just now starting to appreciate. President Trump and congressional leaders should devote themselves to correcting the problems in Obamacare, not craving its collapse. (Reginald Ballantyne, 7/14)

Boston Globe: Fixing Health Care The Right Way
But there is a great deal of uncertainty and instability in health care due to changes being considered at the federal level that would result in higher costs for seniors and children with disabilities, a loss of federal revenue for the state, and a reduction in payments for health care providers... Without regard to what’s happening in Washington, Massachusetts needs to continue to innovate and create a sustainable health care system for both our residents and our economy. Health care costs currently strain not only the state’s budget, but also those of our businesses and families. (Stan Rosenberg and Jim Welch, 7/17)

The Columbus Dispatch: Portman, Brown Could Make History
Sen. Rob Portman was right to reject a Republican health-care bill that would have slashed the Medicaid spending upon which millions of Ohioans depend for basic health care. As the GOP effort to replace the Affordable Care Act grinds on, Portman finds himself in a position of great influence to stand up for an approach that balances fiscal pragmatism with compassion and decency. (7/17)

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