Podcasts

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: It’s Health Costs, Stupid (2022 Edition)

As the pandemic wanes, for now, the ever-rising cost of health care is again taking center stage. Meanwhile, a year into the Biden administration, the FDA finally has a Senate-confirmed commissioner, Dr. Robert Califf. Tami Luhby of CNN, Sarah Karlin-Smith of the Pink Sheet, and Rachel Cohrs of Stat join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more. Also this week, Rovner interviews Hannah Wesolowski of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, about how the pandemic has worsened the nation’s mental health crisis and what can be done about it.

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: FDA Takes Center Stage

Congress is set to start its once-every-five-years review of the law that authorizes user fees to finance the hiring of personnel to speed the FDA review of drugs. The periodic renewals of “PDUFA” also give lawmakers a chance to make other changes to the agency at the hub of the pandemic. Meanwhile, the FDA could also find itself at the center of the abortion debate and a controversial new medication to treat Alzheimer’s disease. Anna Edney of Bloomberg News, Joanne Kenen of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Politico, and Sarah Karlin-Smith of the Pink Sheet join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more.

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Paging the HHS Secretary

Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra is drawing criticism for his hands-off handling of the covid crisis even though the heads of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institutes of Health, and FDA report to him. Meanwhile, the Department of Labor looks to enforce mental health “parity laws” that have failed to achieve their goals. Margot Sanger-Katz of The New York Times, Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico, and Rachel Cohrs of Stat join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more. Also this week, Rovner interviews KHN’s Noam N. Levey, who reported and wrote the latest KHN-NPR “Bill of the Month” episode about a large emergency room bill for a small amount of medical care.

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Record ACA Enrollment Puts Pressure on Congress

Temporary subsidies helped boost enrollment under the Affordable Care Act to a record 14.5 million, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. But unless Democrats in Congress extend those subsidies, many of those new enrollees will be in for a rude surprise just ahead of midterm elections. Meanwhile, the need to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer further crowds an already tight legislative schedule. Joanne Kenen of Politico and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Sarah Karlin-Smith of the Pink Sheet, and Anna Edney of Bloomberg News join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more. Also this week, Rovner interviews Diana Greene Foster, author of “The Turnaway Study: Ten Years, a Thousand Women, and the Consequences of Having — Or Being Denied — An Abortion.”

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Roe v. Wade’s (Possibly Last) Anniversary

Jan. 22 marks the 49th — and very likely last — anniversary of the Supreme Court’s landmark abortion decision, Roe v. Wade. The court’s conservative supermajority seems poised to overturn later this year the ruling that legalized abortion nationwide. Also this week, the Biden administration turns 1, with much of its domestic and health agenda yet unrealized. Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico, Shefali Luthra of the 19th, and Kimberly Leonard of Insider join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more. Also this week, Rovner interviews Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the Susan B. Anthony List, about what a post-Roe world might look like.

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Dealing With Drug Prices

Medicare officials tentatively plan to restrict the use of a controversial Alzheimer’s drug to only those patients participating in clinical trials, while the Department of Health and Human Services looks into lowering the monthly Medicare Part B premium. Meanwhile, covid confusion still reigns, as the Biden administration moves, belatedly, to make more masks and tests available. Joanne Kenen of Politico and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Sarah Karlin-Smith of the Pink Sheet and Rachel Cohrs of Stat join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more.

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Contagion Confusion

It’s 2022 and the covid-19 pandemic is still with us, as are congressional efforts to pass President Joe Biden’s big health and social spending bill. But other issues seem certain to take center stage on this year’s health agenda, including abortion, the state of the health care workforce, and prescription drug prices. Tami Luhby of CNN, Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico and Mary Ellen McIntire of CQ Roll Call join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more. Also this week, Rovner interviews KHN’s Victoria Knight, who reported the latest KHN-NPR “Bill of the Month” episode.

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Manchin Blows Up Biden’s ‘Build Back Better’

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) dealt a blow to congressional efforts to pass President Joe Biden’s domestic agenda bill, forcing Democrats to regroup starting in 2022. Meanwhile, the omicron covid variant spreads rapidly in the U.S., threatening the stability of the nation’s health care system. Joanne Kenen of Politico and the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, Rachel Cohrs of Stat and Sarah Karlin-Smith of the Pink Sheet join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more, plus a look back at the year in health policy. Also this week, Rovner interviews Ceci Connolly, president and CEO of the Alliance of Community Health Plans.

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Oh, Oh, Omicron

Even before the omicron variant of covid starts to spread widely in the U.S., hospitals are filling up with post-holiday delta cases. Meanwhile, the Supreme Court signals — loudly — that 2022 will be the year it rolls back abortion rights in a big way. Margot Sanger-Katz of The New York Times, Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico and Mary Ellen McIntire of CQ Roll Call join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more.

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Much Ado About (Vaccine) Mandates

The fight over covid vaccines continues to intensify, with Republicans on Capitol Hill pushing — with some success — to cancel President Joe Biden’s “test regularly or vaccinate” requirement for private employers. Meanwhile, abortion is not the only health issue before the Supreme Court this term. Joanne Kenen of Politico and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Sarah Karlin-Smith of the Pink Sheet and Rachel Cohrs of Stat News join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more.

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Roe v. Wade on the Rocks

A Supreme Court majority appears ready to overturn nearly 50 years of abortion rights, at least judging by the latest round of oral arguments before the justices. And a new covid variant, omicron, gains attention as it spreads around the world. Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico, Sarah Karlin-Smith of the Pink Sheet and Shefali Luthra of The 19th join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more. Also this week, Rovner interviews Blake Farmer of Nashville Public Radio about the latest KHN-NPR “Bill of the Month” episode.

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: The Big Biden Budget Bill Passes the House

President Joe Biden’s social spending budget is on its way to the U.S. Senate, where Democratic leaders are (optimistically) hoping to complete work by the end of the year. Meanwhile, covid is surging again in parts of the country, along with the political divides it continues to cause. Margot Sanger-Katz of The New York Times, Joanne Kenen of Politico and the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, and Mary Agnes Carey of KHN join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more. Also this week, Rovner previews next week’s Supreme Court abortion oral arguments with Florida State University law professor Mary Ziegler.