KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

States Count Health Law Dollars, Brace For Back-Ups If Overhaul Struck Down

In health law implementation news, Iowa gets federal grants for home care workers to visit families with children while Minnesota lawmakers brace for losing Medicaid dollars.

Des Moines Register: Health Reform Program Grants $6.6 Million To Iowa For Visits To Young Families' Homes
Iowa will receive $6.6 million in federal grants to expand a program that sends health care workers to the homes of families with young children. The money, announced this week, comes from the federal health-reform law passed last year. Iowa is one of 10 states to receive such grants, which help pay for visits by nurses, social workers or other professionals to the homes of families struggling with poverty or other factors that can complicate child-rearing (Leys, 4/6).

Minnesota Public Radio: Legislators: State Should Have Backup Plan For Health Care Law
Some Republican state lawmakers want the Minnesota human services commissioner to have a contingency plan in place if the federal health care law's Medicaid expansion is either struck down or repealed. Minnesota would lose about $2 billion in federal money between January 2014 and July 2015 if that part of the law doesn't survive. … Minnesota House Majority Leader Matt Dean, R-Dellwood, authored the bill that he said would minimize disruption for people on Medicaid (Stawicki, 4/8).

Meanwhile, in other news -

Modern Healthcare: Iowa Providers' Collaboration Plans Include ACO
Two of Iowa's largest health care providers -- University of Iowa Health Care in Iowa City and Mercy Medical Center in Cedar Rapids -- announced plans to form an accountable care organization as part of a wider collaboration. A statement from UI Healthcare said the two organizations are planning to coordinate patient care and decrease costs through the formation of a Medicare ACO, which would focus on improving disease screening, delivery of acute care, and population-based health management through integrated delivery networks (Carlson, 4/6).

Palm Beach Post: Health Law Aims To Close Gender Gap
Florida women who don't get health insurance through an employer can forget about finding a single comprehensive medical plan that will pay for their care while they deliver a baby. It's one of 25 states in which there are no health plans that include maternity coverage on the individual market. ... Expanded access to maternity insurance is one of the provisions tucked into the 2,700-page law that is the Affordable Care Act. Maternity care grabbed few headlines as Congress spent 18 months wrangling over the legislation and when 26 states, led by Florida, challenged the law. But now the fate of that rule as well as dozens of others is unclear as the U.S. Supreme Court decides whether to strike down the law, which requires virtually every American to buy health insurance (Green, 4/7).

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