Latest Kaiser Health News Stories
The U.S. public health system has been starved for decades and lacks the resources necessary to confront the worst health crisis in a century. An investigation by The Associated Press and KHN has found that since 2010, spending for state public health departments has dropped by 16% per capita and for local health departments by 18%. At least 38,000 public health jobs have disappeared, leaving a skeletal workforce for what was once viewed as one of the world’s top public health systems. That has left the nation unprepared to deal with a virus that has sickened at least 2.6 million people and killed more than 126,000.
Six months after agreeing to a $575 million settlement in a landmark antitrust case, Sutter Health has yet to pay a single dollar and now says the terms may be untenable, given the strain caused by the pandemic.
Public health officials are asking for more money in California’s state budget. But unlike some rich and powerful health care interests, they don’t have an army of lobbyists to curry favor with lawmakers.
The coronavirus pandemic has forced the nation’s doctors and hospitals to reevaluate how they work. At least three major changes may have a lasting impact.
The COVID-19 pandemic is showcasing California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s leadership style to a national audience. The first-term Democrat doesn’t shy away from making splashy announcements and lofty promises, but his plans often lack detail and, in some cases, follow-through.
“An Arm and a Leg” wraps an all-COVID podcast season with three different perspectives on what the pandemic is costing us — and what might come next.
Safety-net health care programs that keep low-income Californians out of nursing homes are on the chopping block as Gov. Gavin Newsom and state lawmakers attempt to plug a massive budget deficit caused by the COVID-19 emergency.
KHN executive editor Damon Darlin wades through mounds of health care policy stories — so you don’t have to.
After being sick with COVID-19, missing weeks of work and pay, this podcast listener has a great story and some advice for us all.
Some large employers interpreted themselves as exempt from new federal laws that say tests for the coronavirus should be free to patients. Large academic medical centers are holding back from sending bills to these patients to avoid a backlash over surprise billing.
Just about anyone who wants a coronavirus test in the state of Tennessee can get one. How? The state got buy-in and lots of participation from private labs by assuring them it will pay them.
A podcast listener who works in the health insurance industry says that when you’re trying to untangle a problem with your health insurance company ask the representative on the phone to slow down. And if need be, don’t hesitate to ask to speak with a supervisor.
In the first quarter of 2020, half the country’s economic devastation happened in the health care sector. Much of the slowdown came after hospitals postponed elective surgeries and as Americans skipped routine doctor’s office visits.
Because the public health system mostly operates in the background, it rarely gets the attention or funding it deserves ― until there’s a crisis.
The Supreme Court this week, in an 8-1 decision, ruled that insurers are due the roughly $12 billion that Congress several years ago tried to cut off in payments under the Affordable Care Act’s “risk corridors” provision. And while the COVID-19 pandemic continues to rage in many places around the country, states are starting to reopen their economies at the urging of President Donald Trump and over objections of public health officials. Caitlin Owens of Axios and Mary Ellen McIntire of CQ Roll Call join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss this and more. Also, Rovner interviews KHN’s Carmen Heredia Rodriguez, who wrote the latest KHN-NPR “Bill of the Month” installment about COVID testing that should have been free but was not.
The Families First Coronavirus Response Act requires private insurers to pay for certain services related to coronavirus testing at no cost to the patient. But gaps in the protections expose patients to unexpected medical bills.
Repurposing one N95 mask 20 times is not the same as having 20 new ones.
With most nonemergency procedures shelved for now, many health insurers are expected to see profits in the near term, but the longer view of how the coronavirus will affect them is far more complicated and could well impact what people pay for coverage next year.
This week on “An Arm and a Leg,” a front-line physician wonders if the health care industry’s drive for “efficiency” has robbed the system of surge capacity, leaving the nation underprepared to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Illinois is moving thousands of children into its Medicaid managed-care program. Proponents say the approach can cut costs while increasing access to care. But after a phase-one rollout of the new health plans caused thousands to temporarily lose coverage, some question whether it’s the right move.