KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

full issue

Red And Blue States Alike Frustrated That Crucial Health Programs Are Languishing In Washington

Everything from the funding of community clinics and CHIP to the uncertainty in the ACA marketplaces is worrying state officials.

Los Angeles Times: Even Red States Feel Left In The Lurch By The Trump Administration's Management Of Healthcare
As it works to roll back the Affordable Care Act, the Trump administration is letting crucial state health initiatives languish, frustrating a growing number of state leaders, including several from solidly Republican states. Last week, Oklahoma’s health secretary sent a blistering letter to senior administration officials, taking them to task for failing to approve a plan state officials drew up to protect their consumers from large rate hikes. (Levey, 10/6)

The Associated Press: Oklahoma Health Officials Warn Of Dire Budget Consequences
For 66-year-old Richard Boston, an Army veteran who has been disabled for more than 20 years, Oklahoma's Advantage program is a lifeline that allows him to continue living in his modest home in southwest Oklahoma City. The state-funded program provides volunteers who do light housework and run errands. It also gives out medical equipment like a lift chair that allows him to get in and out of the bathtub despite his bad knees and back, the result of a disabling fall he suffered during his career as a truck driver. (10/5)

Washington Examiner: States Plead For Federal Flexibility On Health Spending
In a strongly worded letter to the Trump administration, Oklahoma's health commissioner recently expressed frustration that a state waiver to lower costs for Obamacare customers had not been approved as quickly as federal officials had promised. The proposal called for a reinsurance program in which government funding pays for costly medical claims while keeping prices down for other customers. (Leonard, 10/9)

And in marketplace news —

Nashville Tennessean: Open Enrollment 2018: How To Prepare
Consider this your official notice – open enrollment is less than one month away. Beginning Nov. 1, individual health insurance consumers will be able to compare and select 2018 health coverage. That might seem far away now, but don’t procrastinate this year. Open enrollment will be shorter this year than ever before. You have just 45 days to sign up for 2018 coverage. The final deadline is Dec. 15. In years past, open enrollment has extended through January, so be aware that this will not be the case this year. You will have just six weeks to sign up once open enrollment begins, and Healthcare.gov will also be down for maintenance every Sunday morning, with the exception of Dec. 10. (Tolbert, 10/8)

Kaiser Health News: Overlooked By ACA: Many People Paying Full Price For Insurance ‘Getting Slammed'
Paul Melquist of St. Paul, Minn., has a message for the people who wrote the Affordable Care Act: “Quit wrecking my health care. ”Teri Goodrich, of Raleigh, N.C., has the same complaint. “We’re getting slammed. We didn’t budget for this,” she said. Millions of people have gained health insurance because of the federal health law. Millions more have seen their existing coverage improved. (Rovner, 10/9)

This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.