Latest Kaiser Health News Stories
Five states have created “assistant physician” licenses that allow medical school graduates to practice without completing residency training. But a federal indictment in Missouri of one assistant physician has some original supporters trying to rein in the medical specialty.
Gun buying among African Americans has soared in recent years. So have suicide rates among young Black men. Suicide prevention and gun safety efforts need to address race and cultural differences, Black gun owners say.
The Biden administration’s request for billions more in funding to fight covid-19 hit a snag on Capitol Hill this week, as Democrats objected to Republican demands that money allocated to states but not yet spent be reclaimed. Meanwhile, the big annual spending bill about to cross the finish line addresses other health policy changes, such as giving the FDA authority to regulate “synthetic” nicotine. Joanne Kenen of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Politico, Rachel Cohrs of Stat, and Jessie Hellmann of Modern Healthcare join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more. Plus, for extra credit, the panelists recommend their favorite health policy stories of the week they think you should read, too.
Missouri has more people waiting to have their Medicaid applications processed than it has approved since the expansion of the federal-state health insurance program. Although most states process Medicaid applications within a week, Missouri is taking, on average, more than two months. Patient advocates fear that means people will stay uninsured longer, leading them to postpone care or get stuck with high medical bills.
State Medicaid agencies for months have been preparing for the end of a federal mandate that has prevented states from removing people from the safety-net program during the pandemic.
A public health official who said he was anti-abortion and anti-mandate for masks and covid vaccines did not pass the purity test of a Missouri senator who opposes covid public health restrictions. The senator killed the official’s nomination to be state health director, highlighting how hands may be tied in the nationwide fight against infectious diseases.
A hospital in Wisconsin sued to keep seven employees from taking jobs with a competitor. A health system in South Dakota is offering nurses $40,000 signing bonuses. Facilities with fewer resources are finding it difficult or impossible to compete for health care workers.
Many parents of children too young for vaccines are exhausted. Some feel isolated and even forgotten by those who just want to move on even as omicron continues to sweep through parts of the country.
The covid-19 pandemic exposed how state and local governments’ severely outdated technology can hinder unemployment benefits, food stamps, Medicaid, vaccine registrations, and the flow of other critical information. Now, with hefty federal pandemic relief and unexpected tax windfalls, states may finally have the chance to revamp their information technology for health care and social services. But can they?
A KHN reporter had written for years about the people left behind by the absurdly complex and expensive U.S. health care system. Then he found himself navigating that maze as he tried to get his insulin prescription filled.
Missouri has the worst covid-19 vaccination rate for nursing home health care workers in the nation. There, the federal mandate for workers to get vaccinated — upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court — reveals the problems that operators have hiring staff, keeping them, and providing decent care.
A St. Louis-area toddler burned his hand on the stove, and his mom took him to the ER on the advice of her pediatrician. He wasn’t seen by a doctor, and the dressing on the wound wasn’t changed. The bill was more than a thousand dollars.
The top 12 states using antibody therapies produced by Regeneron and Lilly — which research shows don’t work against the omicron variant — include several Southern states with some of the nation’s lowest vaccination rates, but also California, which ranks among the top 20 for fully vaccinated residents.
Fear of covid has kept some adults from moving to nursing homes, and many facilities are in trouble financially. When Nevada, Missouri, officials announced they were planning to close a home specializing in dementia care, members of the community rose up in protest.
KHN and California Healthline staff made the rounds on national and local media this week to discuss their stories. Here’s a collection of their appearances.
Voters in Missouri and Oklahoma approved Medicaid expansion to begin in 2021. But while Oklahoma has enrolled over 200,000 people so far, Missouri has enrolled fewer than 20,000. Why are two such similar states handling the public insurance rollout so differently?
An estimated 275,000 Missouri adults can get dental insurance now as the state has expanded who is eligible for Medicaid. But with so few dentists participating in the program, the state’s already-backlogged dental clinics are facing a glut of new clients.
Health equity advocates see a once-in-a-generation opportunity to provide a dental benefit to millions of older Americans as Congress considers expanding Medicare services. But complicating that push is a debate over how many of the more than 60 million Medicare recipients should receive dental coverage.
Trabajadores de salud piden una legislación federal que los proteja de los crecientes episodios de violencia, que aumentaron durante la pandemia de covid-19.
Health care workers already bore the brunt of workplace violence in the U.S. Now, tensions from an exhausting pandemic are spilling over into hospitals.