KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

First Edition: October 29, 2010

Today's headlines include news about the effort to repeal the health law and Republican and Democrat strategies related to the next Congress.

The Coming War Among Dems Over Health Reform
If Republicans take back the House next week, as expected, a war will erupt among Democrats over the wisdom of passing health care reform and over whether it helped doom the Dem majority. People like Doug Schoen, who got lots of attention by predicting health care would destroy Dems, will crow and chortle about the foolishness of liberal overreach (The Washington Post's Plum Line Blog).

Conservative Group Claims 1 Million Signatures On Repeal Petition
A conservative group critical of the Democrats' healthcare reform law has collected 1 million signatures calling for its repeal, the group announced Thursday (The Hill's Healthwatch Blog).

Races We're Watching: Health Care
Six months ago, the midterm elections were expected to hinge on the recently-passed health care reform legislation, which had awoken a contingent of anti-big government conservatives. Since then, the economy and job creation has taken its place as the prime issue in races across the country. Health took a backseat, but it never went away (Politico).

Citing Specter Shift, Sestak Says Dems Caved In On Healthcare
Rep. Joe Sestak, the Pennsylvania Democratic Senate candidate, said this week that Democrats bent too far in order to pass the healthcare reform bill (The Hill's Healthwatch Blog).

States Fear Health Care Portals' Costs
The administration is asking the states to help craft one of the most expensive and technologically complex pieces of the health care overhaul (Politico).

E-Mails Reveal Dispute Over City's Ad Against Sodas
In the midst of a legislative fight over taxing sodas last year, the New York City health department put together a media campaign about how drinking a can of soda a day "can make you 10 pounds fatter a year." But behind this simple claim was a protracted dispute in the department over the scientific validity of directly linking sugar consumption to weight gain - one in which the city's health commissioner, Dr. Thomas A. Farley, overruled three subordinates, including his chief nutritionist (The New York Times).

Healthcare Experts Blast Fiorina Proposals
Republican senatorial candidate Carly Fiorina, who has pledged to repeal the new healthcare law in her bid to unseat incumbent Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer, is facing new criticism from a group of leading national and California healthcare experts (Los Angeles Times).

NBA Retired Players Launch Health Care Partnership
Charles Smith and other retired NBA players took the stage Thursday with former NFL stars to describe how they, too, suffer from health problems. The National Basketball Retired Players Association is joining forces with P.A.S.T., a group of doctors who provide free care to retired athletes without insurance. P.A.S.T. was already working with former NFL and Major League Baseball players (The Wall Street Journal).

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