KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

State Roundup: Minn. Shutdown’s Health, Economic Impact Significant

News outlets report on a variety of state health issues.

MinnPost: Shutdown's Damage To The Minnesota Economy Will Be Real, Significant – And Incalculable
A variety of state services, such as background checks for employees and license renewals for health-care workers, are not available. … Some of the affects may seem small or transitory, such as modified or canceled vacation trips to state parks. But others are more serious, such as a senior citizen's move to a nursing home because the senior could not continue to live at home when home-care assistants could not get licenses during the shutdown or their backgrounds could not be checked out (Anton, 7/11).

Minneapolis Star Tribune: Dayton Offer Goes Nowhere
While the politicians are stuck, the courts have been deciding which programs get funded and which must be halted. A court decided Monday that highway rest stops could not reopen during the shutdown but meals for homebound elderly should be funded. ... (Judges) also agreed that the Nursing Board cannot be funded to accept applications for new nursing licenses, the state's Drivers and Vehicle Services department cannot keep the electronic vehicle registration system running for auto dealers, the state Health Department cannot review the city of Minnetonka Beach's water main plans and addiction recovery services should not be funded (Stassen-Berger, 7/12). 

California Healthline: How Can California Solve Family Physician Shortage?
Only one in four California counties has the recommended ratio of 60 to 80 primary care physicians for each 100,000 residents, according to the California Medical Association. Things are about to get considerably worse. Roughly six million more Californians will be newly insured in 2014 because of the Affordable Care Act. ... One new medical school -- even two new schools -- would help, but they alone won't entirely solve the dearth of primary care doctors in California. What will? We asked experts and stakeholders what California policymakers can do to encourage a healthy supply of family physicians.

The Connecticut Mirror: Health Care For The Poor Vulnerable In Budget Talks
Medicaid remains a prime target for cuts. And the impact could be far-reaching for states like Connecticut, which is already struggling to preserve its social safety net in a tough fiscal climate. ... One proposal on the table in the debt-and-budget negotiations would replace those three different federal contribution rates with one "blended" rate. It's unclear right now how that single rate would be calculated, and how Connecticut might be affected (Shesgreen, 7/11). 

Health Policy Solutions (a Colorado News service): Industry-Heavy Health Board A Violation Of Law, Consumer Groups Say
Controversy erupted Monday as Colorado's health exchange board met for the first time and consumer advocates demanded that at least one member of the industry-heavy board resign. Consumer groups contend that the board now has five appointees directly related to the health insurance industry, which is a violation of Colorado's new health exchange law. The law said that no more than four of the nine board members could have direct links to the health insurance industry (Kerwin McCrimmon, 7/11). 

HealthyCal: Adult Day Health Care Still Endangered, Despite New Funding
Money set aside in California's newly approved budget for the Adult Day Health Care program provides little to no assurance that the program will continue to exist. ... This past March, legislators passed a bill requiring the state to implement the Keeping Adults Free from Institutions program, which would replace the existing ADHC program at exactly half the cost. ... But the final budget language does not include plans to use the funds for that purpose (Chaussee, 7/11). 

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