Latest Morning Briefing Stories

Single-Payer Promises Were Hallmark Of Calif. Governor’s Campaign. Can 2020 Candidates Learn Lessons From Him?

KHN Morning Briefing

After his primary victory, California Gov. Gavin Newsom admitted that single-payer is a hard reality to achieve. Now that he’s in office, though, he has had some success inching the needle forward. As 2020 Democratic candidates make similar big promises on health care, can they look to him for when they need to turn a political slogan into policy? Meanwhile, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s plan to gradually ease country into “Medicare for All” has once again all but guaranteed the topic will come up in the debate on Wednesday.

Warren Presents Detailed ‘Medicare For All’ Road Map With Three-Year Transition Period

KHN Morning Briefing

The plan may blunt moderates’ criticism that Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) would strip people of their private insurance immediately. The plan still sets ambitious health goals for the first 100 days of Warren’s presidency, where she would use a budgetary maneuver in Congress to create a generous “Medicare for All option.”

The Death Toll For Florida’s Decision Not To Expand Medicaid: 2,776 Lives

KHN Morning Briefing

“What the report shows for the first time is the scale of the impact of that access and just how many lives are truly saved or lost because of the ability to connect to care and maintain that connection to care, particularly for people who have chronic conditions,” said Alison Yager, director of policy advocacy for the Miami-based Florida Health Justice Project. Medicaid news comes out of Wyoming, as well.

New 2020 Candidate Deval Patrick Could Have Health Care Achilles’ Heel In His Ties To Industry, Drug Companies

KHN Morning Briefing

Former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick served on the boards of American Well Corp., a telemedicine company, and Global Blood Therapeutics, a pharmaceutical firm. His links to the health sector are unlikely to serve him well in an election where the industry often serve as the common enemy. In other news from the 2020 campaign trail: the “Medicare for All” debate, veteran suicides, and emergency preparedness.

Medicaid Expansion Becoming More Politically Palatable As Link To Obama Administration Fades In People’s Minds

KHN Morning Briefing

Red states are noticing the benefits their neighbors reaped by expanding the program, and are slowly warming up to it themselves. “There’s been a ton of evidence showing large gains in health care coverage, while helping states economically and keeping rural hospitals open,” said Connie Farrow, spokeswoman for Healthcare for Missouri. “And it hasn’t hurt state budgets. It remains a really good deal for states to cover hundreds of thousands of people.” Medicaid news comes from Wyoming, Idaho and Florida, as well.

A Look Back At The Legacy Left Behind Following Kaiser Permanente CEO Bernard Tyson’s Death

KHN Morning Briefing

Kaiser Permanente Chief Executive Bernard Tyson, one of a few top black executives of major U.S. for-profit or nonprofit corporations, is remembered as an influential voice on issues of race relations and health policy. But his tenure at Kaiser Permanente wasn’t without strife. In other health industry news: a canceled merger, a promotion at UnitedHealth Group, and a possible acquisition.

Bernie Sanders Secures Coveted Endorsement From Powerful Nurses Union

KHN Morning Briefing

The National Nurses United enthusiastically threw its weight behind Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) in the 2016 presidential campaign due to his “Medicare for All” plan, so it was unlikely the union would go for anyone else in the current primary contest. Union members, though, say that while they support Sanders, they won’t be going negative in attacks against his rivals. Meanwhile, KHN fact checks Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s (D-Mass.) claims about out-of-pocket spending.

‘To Err Is Human’ Initiative Set A Goal Of Curbing Preventable Medical Errors 20 Years Ago. But Hospitals Are Still Struggling.

KHN Morning Briefing

“Everyone sat up and said: ‘Wow, we’re not very good. Not only are we very expensive, we kill a lot of people,’ ” recalled Dr. Robert Wachter, chair of the department of medicine at University of California at San Francisco, who who has written about patient safety issues for years. Many of the report’s ambitious goals, such as creating a reliable system of measuring errors, have yet to be realized. In other news on hospitals: debilitating lawsuits, financial struggles at rural facilities, infant deaths from contaminated equipment, and more.

Red States Go Back To The Drawing Board As Roadblocks Derail Medicaid Work Requirements

KHN Morning Briefing

Legal rulings have made red states more hesitant to try to implement work requirements, but Republicans aren’t throwing in the towel yet. Work requirements “are not dead, but they’re certainly on life support,” said Joan Alker, of Georgetown University’s McCourt School of Public Policy. “The reasons for states not to go down this path are piling up.” Medicaid news comes out of Missouri, Wyoming and Maine, as well.