Latest Kaiser Health News Stories
“Medicare-for-all” has become the rallying cry for Democrats in the new Congress. But there is a long list of other ways to increase insurance coverage. Meanwhile, the Trump administration continues to chip away at the Medicaid program for the poor, and new rules could mean higher costs for individual health insurance in 2020. Alice Ollstein of Politico, Stephanie Armour of The Wall Street Journal and Paige Winfield Cunningham of The Washington Post join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and, for “extra credit,” provide their favorite health policy stories of the week.
The governor of California has proposed some big ideas. Who knows whether he can pull them off, but there’s reason for hope.
Some doctors and clinics are proactively informing patients about a proposed policy that could jeopardize the legal status of immigrants who use public benefit programs such as Medicaid. Others argue that because this “public charge” proposal isn’t final — and may never be adopted — disseminating too much information could create unnecessary alarm and cause some patients to drop benefits.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom made health care a priority in his proposed state budget, asking lawmakers to authorize state-funded financial aid for health insurance, impose a penalty on uninsured Californians and expand Medicaid coverage to unauthorized immigrants.
These private insurers say improving education can help enrollees achieve a healthier lifestyle, so some pay for the tests and find ways to assist people studying for the exams.
The 25-bed hospital in Crockett, Texas, abruptly closed its doors in 2017, joining the ranks of nearly 100 rural hospitals that have shut down in the past decade. But the community kept the faith and several doctors reopened the facility this year.
The program that provides health care for about half of the U.S. territory’s population cannot afford to cover the drugs.
Managed-care plans, which reap billions in taxpayer dollars to coordinate care for low-income Americans on Medicaid, outsource crucial treatment decisions to subcontractors that aren’t directly accountable to the government. In California, health officials say one firm improperly withheld or delayed care for hundreds of people.
The fallout continues from that Texas court decision that ruled Congress’ 2017 elimination of the tax penalty for failing to have insurance rendered the entire Affordable Care Act unconstitutional. Meanwhile, enrollment for 2019 at healthcare.gov was down, but far less than many predicted. KHN’s Julie Rovner, along with panelists Joanne Kenen of Politico, Anna Edney of Bloomberg News and Kimberly Leonard of the Washington Examiner, discuss this, plus the best, most overhyped and nerdiest stories of 2018. Also, Rovner interviews GOP strategist and pollster Frank Luntz.
There could be a long legal struggle ahead over the decision by a judge in Texas to invalidate the federal health law. But if his decision stands, it would have long-lasting effects on health care from insurance coverage to Medicare payments to privacy protections.
As the number of people who inject drugs has soared, the rate of hepatitis C infection has climbed steeply, too, because the disease can be tied to sharing needles. Yet many drug patients are not checked for the virus that can damage the liver.
The Lone Star State is an economic powerhouse, yet it fails to take care of its residents’ health and is home to some of the most extreme entrepreneurial medical practices.
The potentially improper payments occurred in 2014 and 2015, when the state says it was under pressure from a massive influx of new applicants due to the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion.
Sign-ups for insurance under the Affordable Care Act are still well behind last year’s mark with just a week until the end of open enrollment in most states. The Supreme Court declines a case that could have allowed states to defund Planned Parenthood. And the Trump administration gets hundreds of thousands of comments about its proposed changes to immigration rules that could penalize people who use government-funded health care and other social service programs. Alice Ollstein of Politico, Anna Edney of Bloomberg News and Rebecca Adams of CQ Roll Call join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and, for “extra credit,” provide their favorite health policy stories of the week.
Executive editor Damon Darlin takes a spin as host of “The Friday Breeze,” whirling through a week of health care news so you don’t have to.
The incentive program to discourage nursing homes from discharging patients too quickly will also give bonuses to facilities with fewer rehospitalizations.