Defending Washington’s Basic Health Plan; Questioning Wisconsin’s Proposed Health Care Cuts
The Seattle Times: Eliminating Washington's Basic Health Plan Will Hurt Economic Recovery
The Basic Health program has played an important role in extending the safety net to provide coverage to many low-income people who can't afford to purchase coverage on their own and don't qualify for Medicaid. It's much easier to retain an infrastructure than to build a new one from scratch. Simply put, leaving people without health insurance lengthens the recession and imposes costs on us all (Brennan and Haas, 11/21).
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Families Can't Afford Walker Health Cuts
Shared sacrifice and tough decisions are necessary to address the difficult fiscal issues and health care crisis facing our state. Changes to make our state's health programs more cost-effective and efficient must be on the table. However, these changes should have been considered in an inclusive, accountable and evidence-based manner that allowed for ample public input and legislative oversight. And while there are some elements of the proposal that we support, the package as a whole deals a significant blow to the years of progress our state has made to ensure affordable access to quality health coverage (Sandy Pasch and Jon Richards, 11/21).
WBUR's CommonHealth blog: Turnbull: Stop Kvelling, We Still Need Aggressive Action To Halt Rising Premiums
I doubt that employers or workers in Massachusetts feel much better knowing that we don't have the highest health insurance premiums in the country, or that people in Massachusetts pay a lower proportion of their income for their insurance than folks in many other states. ... We won't do much to address these problems unless Massachusetts can be the top-ranked state in one area where being #1 would truly be best: the resolve and ability of our political leaders to take strong actions to address the rising costs of health care and health insurance (Nancy Turnbull, 11/21).
Bloomberg: Mandatory Insurance Is Wrong Fix for Health Care
During the 2008 Democratic primaries, one of the few differences he had with rival Hillary Clinton was that her health care plan featured an individual mandate to purchase health insurance, while Obama rejected a mandate on principle. ... Obama's position during the primaries accorded with the elementary principle that there should be a strong presumption against ordering people to do something. Even people who, like Obama, now believe that a mandate is necessary can agree with this principle (Ramesh Ponnuru, 11/21).
Georgia Health News: Solution To Senior Care Crisis
[T]he national average spent on a patient's inpatient care during the last two years of their life is $25,860; and the average number of days they spent in the hospital is 23.6 days. At Gundersen, the average number of days in the hospital is 13.5, and the total spent during their last two years of life is $18,359. Despite these lower costs and less use of hospital services in La Crosse, the median age at death is 80 – no different than if thousands more dollars were spent on the patient (Bernard Hammes and Nancy Desmond, 11/21).
The New York Times: A Reasonable Decision On Avastin
The Food and Drug Administration's withdrawal of its approval for Avastin to treat advanced breast cancer is causing understandable anguish and anger among women who believe the drug has saved or prolonged their lives. But the agency followed the scientific evidence, which showed the drug was not as effective as it first seemed, and that its severe side effects outweighed its benefits for a vast majority of patients (11/21).