KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Today’s Opinions: Medicare’s Legacy And Future; Missouri Vote On Health Mandate; Overhaul Predictions

Without Individual Mandate, Health Care Reform Isn't Reform Kansas City Star
Universally affordable care, especially for sick people, is the sweet spot of health care reform. But nearly all health policy experts think you have to swallow the bitter pill of mandated insurance purchases to get there. Seven states have tried to ban insurance discrimination based on pre-existing health conditions without requiring participation in insurance plans from healthy consumers. In each instance, the experiment failed miserably (8/17). 

Missouri's Proposition C Vote Yields Wide Range Of Political Effect Columbia Missourian
The administration may be correct in assuming the courts will adhere to the federal government trumping states rights in the issue of individual purchase of health insurance-the Supreme Court tally will be 5-4 either way. Nevertheless, to ignore or dismiss the stated will of the people is a recipe for disaster at the polls (J. Karl Miller, 8/18).

Eyeing Insurers' Expenses Kaiser Health News Blog Watch
Bloggers examine one of the key issues at the meeting of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners -– the question of what expenses insurers will be able to count as medical care, which is important because the new health law sets requirements for such spending (Steadman, 8/17). 

Medicare: Read The Disclaimer The Houston Chronicle
If the reports from the Trustees for Social Security and Medicare are accurate, our collective unfunded obligations shrank by a whopping $15.56 trillion when the reports were released on Aug. 5. … A reasonable person might ask if such miracles are possible (Scott Burns, 8/17).

Getting Personal: Without Medicare I'd Be Broke Or Dead Huffington Post
It's not too late to observe and celebrate the 45th anniversary of Medicare, for it's a good occasion to wonder, in this time of economic distress, what life would have been like without it for the 45 million of us who are eligible because we are disabled or over 65 (Saul Friedman, 8/17).

The Obamacare Disaster American Spectator
The bottom line is that you will lose your health care under this legislation, if not your job, your country as they bankrupt America, and maybe ultimately your life or the life of a loved one (Peter Ferrara, 8/18).

Health-Reform Benefits Already Flowering Delaware County (Pa.) Daily Times
It was a coup for both Republicans and Democrats that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 was signed into law in March. Because of the nature of the political beast, the health care reform act is not perfect, but it is representative of a bipartisan effort to cure one of the nation's most notorious ills (8/18).

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