Viewpoints: Heath Insurance And Mortality; Newly Insured Vs. Previously Insured On Marketplaces
Politico: Death On The Installment Plan
[T]he connection between health insurance and mortality is really hard to pin down, even if insurance truly has strong protective effects. The uninsured in America are mainly non-elderly adults. Deaths are really rare in this population, on the order of 0.4 percent per year. according to an Urban Institute study. ... On Monday, though, a beautiful study was published in Annals of Internal Medicine that provides some of the best data we have connecting health coverage to saved lives. It’s changed my thinking, too. I’m more confident than I was last week that the ACA will save many thousands of lives every year (Harold Pollack, 5/7).
Forbes: New McKinsey Survey: 74% Of Obamacare Sign-Ups Were Previously Insured
One of the principal flaws in the coverage of Obamacare’s exchange enrollment numbers to date has been that the press has not made distinctions between those who have “signed up” for Obamacare-based plans, and those who have actually paid for those plans and thereby achieved enrollment in health insurance. A new survey from McKinsey indicates that a large majority of people signing up are now paying for their coverage. This is progress for the health law. But the survey still indicates that three-fourths of enrollees were previously insured (Avik Roy, 5/10).
The Weekly Standard: Obamacare Myth-Making
With enrollment in the Obamacare exchanges now closed, Democrats and their friends in the media are ebullient. Obamacare is an enormous success, they say, and conservatives have been humiliated. On closer inspection, however, things seem decidedly less bullish for President Obama’s signature achievement (Jay Cost, 5/19).
The New York Times: A Health Care Showdown in Virginia
In Virginia, there are 400,000 low-income people who can’t afford health coverage but don’t qualify for federal insurance subsidies. If they lived across the state line in Maryland, West Virginia or Kentucky, which have expanded their Medicaid programs, they could get the coverage they need. ... Virginia is at least debating the issue. Nineteen Republican-dominated states, mostly in the South and Midwest, have flatly said no. To accept expanded Medicaid in their view is to accept the Affordable Care Act and let the public witness its benefits (5/11).
The New York Times: Real Goal Of Abortion ‘Limits’: Bans
[I]n state after state, with the enthusiastic support of Republican lawmakers, it has become increasingly difficult, if not impossible, for women to get safe and legal abortion care. ... Beyond Texas and Mississippi, mandates requiring affiliation with local hospitals are nearing legislative passage or are under court review in Alabama, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Wisconsin. As it is, there are few abortion clinics left in those states, so closing even one more would significantly diminish capacity. Time is running out to stop this spreading peril (5/10).
The Sacramento Bee: The Conversation: Stark Differences Widen Health Gap
California is a land of health extremes, and to see what that means, you need only travel a few miles from the state Capitol. Placer and Yuba counties border each other about a half-hour’s drive north of downtown Sacramento. Both are largely rural. But the similarities end there (Daniel Weintraub, 5/11).
The New York Times: The Rise Of Antibiotic Resistance
In a report issued late last month, the [World Health Organization] found that antimicrobial resistance in bacteria (the main focus of the report), fungi, viruses and parasites is an increasingly serious threat in every part of the world. “A problem so serious that it threatens the achievements of modern medicine,” the organization said. ... The most urgent need is to minimize the overuse of antibiotics in medicine and agriculture, which accelerates the development of resistant strains (5/10).
Cleveland Plain Dealer: Stepping Up Fight Against Elder Abuse Is Noble Effort
Among the more vulnerable members of our society are the many elderly people who are susceptible to abuse or exploitation. Each year, one in nine people 60 or older suffers abuse of some kind, according to a 2009 U.S. Department of Justice study cited by Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine (5/10).
The New York Times: Please, Mother, Enough
Elder care has become a serious concern in many developed countries in recent years as our societies have aged beyond previous expectations, but the situation is especially severe in Japan. Elder care is often a thankless task, and longevity compounds its difficulty. ... Mythology and Confucianism aside, many people caring for an aged mother genuinely love her and wish to honor her to the end of her days. Yet, as time drags on excruciatingly, there are bound to be moments when they wish heartily for her to die. Facing this truth, however, is difficult (Minae Mizumura, 5/9).
Charlotte Observer: Support Students With Their Mental Health
Experts agree that mental health is an important determinant of school success and functioning. Despite its importance, past budget constraints have prevented Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools from offering necessary mental health support services for children. CMS Superintendent Dr. Heath Morrison has submitted a 2014-15 budget proposal that provides children the tools necessary to be safe, healthy and educated in our schools (Susan K. Campbell, Libby Safrit and Molly Shaw, 5/10).