KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Wis. Lawmakers Poised To OK Bill That Will Require Ultrasound Before Abortion

Wisconsin lawmakers appear poised to approve a measure supported by the governor that would require women seeking an abortion get an ultrasound before the procedure. 

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Senate Republicans Back Abortion Measures As Democrats Hold Up Final Vote
Republicans in the state Senate gave preliminary approval to a bill Tuesday requiring women seeking abortions to get ultrasounds and doctors providing them to have hospital admitting privileges, clearing the way for the measure to become law by the end of the month. Democrats blocked a final vote on the bill Tuesday, but Senate President Mike Ellis (R-Neenah) said senators would return to the floor at 8 a.m. Wednesday to give final passage to the measure. The plan has the support of Republicans who control the Assembly, as well as GOP Gov. Scott Walker (Marley, 6/12).

The Associated Press: Democrats Delay Vote On Bill Requiring Ultrasound
Gov. Scott Walker said Tuesday he will sign a measure that's quickly working its way through the Republican-controlled Legislature that would require women seeking an abortion to undergo an ultrasound. The Senate debated the measure Tuesday, a week after it was introduced, but Democrats used a procedural move to delay a vote until Wednesday morning. The Assembly hoped to take it up Thursday (Wang, 6/11).

Elsewhere, New York lawmakers consider nurse-patient staffing ratios, and North Carolina grapples with AIDS care and Medicaid funding.

The Associated Press: NY Bill Would Mandate Hospital Nurse Staffing
A push to increase the number of nurses per patient at New York's 185 acute care hospitals pits promises of fewer patient deaths and complications against a billion dollars or more in annual health care costs. Advocates say required staffing of one nurse for every two intensive-care patients and 1-to-4 ratios in regular medical-surgical units will improve patient care, reduce deaths, complaints and readmissions and leave hospitals financially intact (Virtanen, 6/11).

North Carolina Health News: Funding For AIDS Drugs Faces Budget
The two houses of the General Assembly are differing on how much funding to provide for the N.C. AIDS Drug Assistance Program. At times, there’s been enough to provide medications to treat HIV for people earning as much as $45,000 per year. At other times, the program has been so underfunded that North Carolina had one of the longest waiting lists for AIDS medications in the country (Hoban, 6/12).

North Carolina Health News: Medicaid In The House And Senate Budgets
This past weekend, the House of Representatives presented it’s biennial budget. NC Health News has put the House’s plans for Medicaid next to the Senate plans for convenient comparison (Hoban, 6/12).

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