Podcast: ‘What The Health?’ Congress CHIPs Away At Health Insurance For Kids

Oct. 1 marked the official end to this year’s effort to “repeal and replace” the Affordable Care Act. But the start of fiscal 2018 also marked the end of the federal authorization for the popular Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Congress has belatedly begun work to renew the program, but offsetting the $8 billion cost is likely to cause some partisan heartburn.

CHIP is far from the only health news in Washington this week. Other hot items include:

  • Washington’s latest parlor game: Who will replace Tom Price as secretary of Health and Human Services? The list of candidates is long — but so is the list of people who aren’t interested.
  • Continuing efforts at bipartisanship: If Sens. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) and Patty Murray (D-Wash.) could broker a compromise for their discreet effort to stabilize the insurance marketplaces, it would represent a sea change in the politics surrounding the federal health law. But getting something through the House is still a big question mark.
  • Democrats divided over health, too: Rep. John Larson (D-Conn.) says his proposal to allow people from age 50 to 64 to buy into the Medicare program is a common-sense fix that would help lower premium costs on the health law marketplaces.

In this episode of “What the Health?” Julie Rovner of Kaiser Health News, Stephanie Armour of The Wall Street Journal, Margot Sanger-Katz of the New York Times, and Joanne Kenen of Politico discuss these issues and more.

Plus, for “extra credit,” the panelists recommend their favorite health stories of the week they think you should read, too.

Julie Rovner: Bloomberg’s “FDA Warns Bakery Company ‘Love’ Is Not An Ingredients In Granola,” by Anna Edney

Margot Sanger-Katz: The New York Times’ “The Best Health Care System In The World. Which One Would You Pick?” by Aaron Carroll and Austin Frakt.

Joanne Kenen: Politico’s “Price Resigns From HHS After Facing Fire For Travel,” by Dan Diamond, Rachana Pradhan and Adriel Bettelheim; and “Trump’s Breaking Point With Price,” by Andrew Restuccia, Josh Dawsey and Dan Diamond.

Stephanie Armour: The Los Angeles Times’ “Tom Price May Be Gone, But The Trump Administration’s Sabotage Of Obamacare Is Moving Ahead At Full Speed,” by Michael Hiltzik.

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