Colorado Considers Changing Its Red Flag Law After Mass Shooting at Nightclub
In El Paso County, where five people were killed in a mass shooting at a nightclub in November, officials have filed relatively few emergency petitions to temporarily remove a person’s guns, with scant approvals.
Survivors of Gangs and Gun Violence, These Women Now Help Others Navigate Grief
As teens, these three women lived amid street gangs around East St Louis, Illinois. Now, as adults, they support the families who have lost loved ones to gun violence. And because of their past, some residents trust them more than they do the police.
Hundreds of Hospitals Sue Patients or Threaten Their Credit, a KHN Investigation Finds. Does Yours?
An examination of billing policies and practices at more than 500 hospitals across the country shows widespread reliance on aggressive collection tactics.
Inside a Children’s Hospital: Struggling to Cope With a Surge of Respiratory Illness
Pediatric cases of RSV and flu have families crowding into ERs, as health systems juggle staff shortages. In Michigan, only 10 out of 130 hospitals have a pediatric ICU.
The Official Who Investigates Suspicious Deaths in Your Town May Be a Doctor — Or Not
Across the country, there are no consistent requirements for the officials who investigate suspicious and unexpected deaths. Some have no medical training, others are doctors trained in forensic pathology. Washington, California, Illinois, and Georgia are among the states that have recently attempted to make changes — with mixed success.
HIV Outbreak Persists as Officials Push Back Against Containment Efforts
Research shows offering clean syringes to people who misuse IV drugs is effective in combating the spread of HIV. But an epidemiologist and advocates say state and local officials in West Virginia, home to one of the worst HIV outbreaks in recent years, have taken measures that render syringe exchange less accessible.
To Combat Gun Violence, This Artist Turns Ammunition Into Art
In a city plagued by gun violence, Mykael Ash is turning ammunition into art. Ash, who lives in East St. Louis, Illinois, frequently walks through parts of the city where bullet shells aren’t hard to find. The shell casings represent a cycle of inequality, Ash says, and the art he makes with it serves as a call to action.
Why Medicaid Expansion Ballots May Hit a Dead End After a Fleeting Victory in South Dakota
Since 2017, Medicaid expansion has been adopted in seven states where a question was placed directly on the ballot. But campaign leaders say that strategy may not work in Florida and Wyoming, where Republican opposition remains strong.
How Medicare Advantage Plans Dodged Auditors and Overcharged Taxpayers by Millions
Facing rare scrutiny from federal auditors, some Medicare Advantage health plans failed to produce any records to justify their payments, government records show. The audits revealed millions of dollars in overcharges to Medicare over three years.
KHN Investigation: The System Feds Rely On to Stop Repeat Health Fraud Is Broken
A months-long KHN examination of the system meant to bar fraudsters from Medicaid, Medicare, and other federal health programs found gaping holes and expansive gray areas through which banned individuals slip to repeatedly bilk taxpayer-funded programs.
More States to Consider Extending Postpartum Medicaid Coverage Beyond Two Months
Fifteen states haven’t moved to extend Medicaid coverage for new moms beyond the minimum of 60 days after birth. But at least four of those holdout states — Montana, Wyoming, Missouri, and Mississippi — are expected to consider proposals to extend coverage in their upcoming legislative sessions.
The Disability Tax: Medical Bills Remain Inaccessible for Many Blind Americans
Health insurers and health care systems across the country are violating disability rights laws by sending medical bills that blind and visually impaired people cannot read, a KHN investigation has found. By hindering the ability of blind Americans to know what they owe, some bills get sent to debt collections.
Addiction Treatment Proponents Urge Rural Clinicians to Pitch In by Prescribing Medication
The number of U.S. health care providers certified to prescribe buprenorphine more than doubled in the past four years, and treatment advocates hope to see that trend continue.
A New Use for Dating Apps: Chasing STDs
For contact tracers of sexually transmitted diseases, telephones and text messages have become ineffective. Dating apps increasingly are their best bet for informing people of their exposure risks.
When Malpractice Occurs at Community Health Centers, Taxpayers Pay
Federally funded clinics and their doctors are protected against lawsuits by federal law, with taxpayers footing the bill. The health centers say that allows them to better serve their low-income patients, but lawyers say the system handcuffs consumers with a cumbersome legal process and makes it harder for the public to see problems.
Trickle of Covid Relief Funds Helps Fill Gaps in Rural Kids’ Mental Health Services
Only a sliver of the funding given to state, local, and tribal governments through the American Rescue Plan Act has been steered to mental health nationwide, but mental health advocates and clinicians hope the money it provides will help address gaps in care for children. In Appalachian Ohio, the funding is helping expand services.
Schools, Sheriffs, and Syringes: State Plans Vary for Spending $26B in Opioid Settlement Funds
The cash represents an unprecedented opportunity to derail the opioid epidemic, but with countless groups advocating for their share of the pie, the impact could depend heavily on geography and politics.
How Banks and Private Equity Cash In When Patients Can’t Pay Their Medical Bills
Hospitals strike deals with financing companies, generating profits for lenders, and more debt for patients.
How Optimism Can Close the Medicaid Coverage Gap
Low-income residents in states that haven’t expanded Medicaid are in a tough spot: They don’t qualify for the subsidies that people with slightly higher incomes get to buy marketplace plans because of a glitch in the federal health law. But a court decision last year makes it easier for them to make good-faith estimates of a pay increase, and there is no financial penalty if they don’t hit that figure.
Medicare Plan Finder Likely Won’t Note New $35 Cap on Out-of-Pocket Insulin Costs
In August, Congress approved a $35 cap on what seniors will pay for insulin, but that change came too late to add to the online tool that helps Medicare beneficiaries compare dozens of drug and medical plans. Federal officials say beneficiaries who use insulin will have the opportunity to switch plans after open enrollment ends Dec. 7.