KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

States Eye Budget Cuts And Health Reform

Pennsylvania's hospitals got a small piece of good news when an overdue budget came with smaller than expected cuts. But there and in other states, programs continue to find programs and budgets on the chopping block.

Modern Healthcare: "Pennsylvania's overdue budget included smaller cuts to hospital revenue than proposed, but redirected existing taxes and fees into the state's $27.8 billion general fund from healthcare funds and added a Medicaid managed-care tax" (Evans, 10/12).

The (Norfolk) Virginian-Pilot: "Most Virginians don't like key aspects of the Democrats' health care reform proposals and believe they will lead to higher taxes and rationing of health care, according to a new poll." The poll was conducted by Mason-Dixon Polling & Research (Bartel, 10/13).

The Arizona Republic: "With its five conservative Republicans, two liberal Democrats and three centrists, Arizona's delegation represents the major groups Obama must contend with in Congress" to pass health reform (Kelly, 10/13).

The Salt Lake Tribune on the threat to a Medicaid-funded help program for seniors: "Through the state-funded Alternatives Program [one senior] got help with household chores and grocery shopping. Mary, his aide, is "an excellent worker. She does my laundry and fixes things up around the apartment," he told the Tribune. The man was nearly evicted after failing to maintain his apartment in the aftermath of a stroke. But, budget woes could end the Medicaid-funded program (Rosetta, 10/12).

The Associated Press/The Boston Globe: A Colorado insurer, "Rocky Mountain Health Plans said Monday it will no longer consider obesity a 'pre-existing condition' barring coverage for hefty infants." The change followed a decision to refuse coverage to a 17 pound 4-month-old whose father works at a Grand Junction NBC affiliate (10/12).

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