KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

State Roundup: Virginia’s New Gov. Wants Medicaid Expansion; Insurance Costs More For N.C. Rural Folks

A selection of health care news from Virginia, Florida, North Carolina and Iowa.

The Washington Post: Virginia's McDonnell To Propose Funding Hike For Education, Mental Health, Water Quality
Gov. Robert F. McDonnell will propose a two-year state budget Monday that calls for boosting K-12 education funding by nearly $600 million and pouring millions more into higher education, mental health services, water-quality improvements and homelessness-prevention programs. ... The [incoming governor, Democrat Terry McAuliffe] hopes to change it profoundly by adding language to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, which state House Republicans say won’t get by them (Vozzella, 12/15).

Des Moines Register: New Health Care Approach Focuses More On Prevention
Norma Vanderpool probably didn’t realize that the pleasant, inquisitive nurse visiting her hospital room last week represented a big change in health care…Burton, who works as a “transition coach” for Mercy, wanted to make sure the patient had everything she needed to prevent another health crisis once she returned home to Indianola (Leys, 12/14).

Related, earlier story: In Iowa, Accountable Care Begins To Make A Difference (Gold, 11/21)

Miami Herald: Broward Health Commissioner’s Lobbying Gig Raises Some Concerns
When Clarence V. McKee quit his commissioner’s seat on the governing board of Broward Health in January, records show he urged his colleagues to keep an eye on consulting contracts doled out by the tax-supported public healthcare system. But less than a month later and without any public discussion by his former colleagues, McKee upgraded his unpaid position to a lobbying contract worth $65,000 courtesy of Broward Health Chief Executive Frank Nask, whose performance the board oversees (Christensen, 12/15).

North Carolina Health News: Rural Premium Rates Impacted By Politics Locale
In this first of a two-part story, N.C. Health News examines how in rural parts of North Carolina, insurance premiums on the federal exchanges are more expensive in rural areas than originally hoped, leaving many without options. ... Even as some recount stories of extremely low monthly premiums, others living in rural counties who are ineligible for Medicaid or make too much to qualify for subsidies on the exchange are still wondering how to obtain affordable coverage (Porter-Rockwell, 12/16).

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