First Edition: July 30, 2010
In today's headlines, a report about the administration's new high-risk pool regulations and how they address abortion coverage, as well as other details related to the new health law and the insurance marketplace.
High-Risk Health Insurance Pool Rules Bar Abortions, Limit Patient Costs
Kaiser Health News staff writer Phil Galewitz writes: "Elective abortions will be prohibited and people with pre-existing conditions will be able to get comprehensive benefits without paying any more than healthy people, under new federal regulations for high-risk health insurance pools released today by the Obama administration" (Kaiser Health News).
Commonwealth Fund Analysis Highlights Benefits For Women In Health-Care Overhaul
The law Congress adopted this spring to reshape the nation's health-care system will be especially beneficial to women, because they traditionally have relied on health care more than men, faced more insurance problems and had greater difficulty paying medical bills, according to a new analysis (The Washington Post).
Democrats Under Fire Over Health-Law Reporting Mandate
Congressional Democrats may water down or repeal new tax-reporting rules that are supposed to raise $16 billion for health-care legislation, facing a chorus of criticism about the rules (The Wall Street Journal).
Mo. Ballot Measures Test Federal Health Care Law
More than 1 million people are expected to participate in what amounts to the largest-ever public opinion poll on the nation's new health care law (The Associated Press).
Abortion Groups Caught Off Guard
Anti-abortion groups leapt into action last month when the National Right to Life Committee warned that elective abortions would be covered under a Pennsylvania insurance program created by the health care reform law (Politico).
Unemployment Extension 101: How Health Care Is Affected
When President Obama signed the six month federal extension of unemployment insurance, one item not included was an extension of the subsidy for health insurance for newly laid-off workers. That means that as of June 1, thousands of workers are either paying out most of their unemployment checks for health coverage under "COBRA," or just not getting covered (The Christian Science Monitor).
Health Insurance Rates: California Plans To Crack Down, But How Hard?
As millions of Californians continue to cope with surging costs for health insurance, state lawmakers, consumer advocates and lobbyists in Sacramento are haggling over how tough to get with companies seeking large rate increases (Los Angeles Times).
House Rejects Bill To Aid Sick 9/11 Responders
A bill that would have provided up to $7.4 billion in aid to people sickened by World Trade Center dust fell short in the House on Thursday, raising the possibility that the bulk of compensation for the ill will come from a legal settlement hammered out in the federal courts (The Associated Press).
Senate Bill Aims To Integrate Law, Public Health
A bipartisan group of senators on Thursday unveiled legislation designed to cut healthcare costs by offering legal services to patients in public health settings (The Hill).
In Mission, Aging Hospital Is Seen As A Bargaining Chip
St. Luke's hospital, in San Francisco's Mission district, has been clinging to life for years. The hospital is run down and lacks air conditioning. It is licensed to support 229 beds, but on an average day just 130 are filled. In-patient psychiatric care, occupational health services and care for the sickest newborns are no longer offered (The New York Times).
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