KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

State Highlights: Democratic Gov. Hopefuls Spar Over Hospitals In N.Y.

A selection of health policy stories from New York, Indiana, South Carolina, California and Kansas.

The New York Times: Debating A Fix For Hospitals In Dire Straits
Of all the issues in the Democratic primary for mayor, one of the few that most candidates seem to agree on is that struggling New York City hospitals need to be saved. ... Despite the discourse, it is the state that regulates hospitals and gives the grants and loans needed to keep them from failing. And Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo is not throwing the hospitals a lifeline (Hartocollis, 9/6).

The Associated Press: W. Ind. Prison Inmates Provide End-Of-Life Care
Inmates at a western Indiana prison are trained to give end-of-life care for their cellmates through a hospice program as a way to help deal with an aging prison population. The program at the Wabash Valley Correctional Institute in Carlisle, 35 miles south of Terre Haute, was the idea of a prisoner who had watched his friend die of lung cancer in 2009 without a single outside visitor. Inmate volunteers have cared for 50 convicts in their final days over the past three years, The Indianapolis Star reports (9/8).

The Associated Press: Medicaid Agency Helping School Clinics Succeed
Four high-poverty schools in Charleston County [South Carolina] could become a statewide model for in-school medical clinics that offer parents a convenient way to take their children to the doctor's office. … Agency officials say they want to simultaneously help the clinics grow and become financially stable, so services don't depend on fluctuating grants. That involves helping enroll qualifying students in the government health care program for the poor and disabled, as well as training staff on how to bill Medicaid for services (Adcox, 9/9).

The Hill: AFL-CIO Convention Avoids Health Care Union's Protests
The AFL-CIO narrowly avoided an embarrassing union-led protest by canceling convention events that spotlighted a health care company. The National Union of Healthcare Workers (NUHW) was planning to protest events highlighting Kaiser Permanente, scheduled for Sunday and Monday this week in Los Angeles (Bogardus, 9/9).

Kansas Health Institute: Inspector General's Report Has Rural Hospitals Worried
A new report from the inspector general of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services includes recommendations that -- if acted upon -- could undermine hundreds of small, rural hospitals across the nation including scores in Kansas, hospital officials and some rural health experts say (Shields, 9/9).

California Healthline: Home Health Industry Could Use More Regulation, According To UCLA
UC-Los Angeles researchers yesterday released a study that concluded more regulation is needed among home health care workers in California. … A bill is pending in the current session, AB 1217 by Assembly member Bonnie Lowenthal (D-Long Beach), which would establish certification of home health workers. The bill has raised privacy concerns because it calls for posting of certification data -- including names of care givers -- online. Other concerns revolve around the possible rise in cost of home health services (Gorn, 9/6).

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