Latest Morning Briefing Stories

Oklahoma Voters Narrowly OK Medicaid Expansion

KHN Morning Briefing

On Tuesday, voters approved the ballot measure that amended the state’s constitution to make it possible for the Medicaid program to provide health insurance to tens of thousands of low-income residents. Support for the effort was concentrated in the state’s urban areas, while rural voters largely opposed it.

‘Trump Can’t Wish It Away:’ In Speech On Health Care, Biden Blasts Rival’s Handling Of Pandemic

KHN Morning Briefing

“[Donald Trump’s] like a child who can’t believe this has happened to him — all his whining and self-pity,” presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden said during a campaign speech in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. “Well, this pandemic didn’t happen to him. It happened to all of us. And his job isn’t to whine about it. His job is to do something about it, to lead.” Biden also criticized the president’s “heartless” actions around the ACA and called for a public option. Meanwhile, Trump campaign message continues to sidestep the resurgence of coronavirus cases.

House Democrats Not Trying To Swing For The Fences With New Health Proposal To Shore Up ACA

KHN Morning Briefing

The House Democrats are set to unveil a health care plan that focuses on increasing subsidies and negotiating powers for Medicare drug prices. But the plan falls far short of the progressive health care push that was seen earlier in the year, pre-pandemic. Although it would be dead-on-arrival in the Senate, the legislation will help Democrats anchor their election messaging.

Republicans Nervous That Decade-Long ‘Repeal And Replace’ Push Will Come Back To Bite Them During Pandemic

KHN Morning Briefing

The White House is expected to file legal briefs this week asking the Supreme Court to put an end to the Affordable Care Act. But some Republicans are now wondering if that’s the most political savvy move during a pandemic. Meanwhile, Democrats want to expand subsidies and Medicaid incentives. In other news, lawmakers push for more information on federal aid distribution.

House Plans Vote On Health Law Tweaks Aiming To Improve Affordability

KHN Morning Briefing

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) only offered a vague statement about the plan, but said the changes will help lower premiums and co-pays. In other health industry news: ER bill mark-ups, insurance coverage during a pandemic and hospital stocks.

IRS Relaxes Normally Strict Rules To Allow Workers To Make Changes To Health Insurance Plans

KHN Morning Briefing

But the policy change doesn’t require employers to offer these options; they must opt in if they want to give their employees added flexibility. In other insurance and cost news: hospital lobbyists seek higher COBRA subsidies from Congress, UnitedHealthcare to have bigger footprint in ACA marketplace, how Medicaid and ACA subsidies could help recently laid off workers, and more.

Supreme Court To Hear Oral Arguments By Phone In Health Law Contraception Case

KHN Morning Briefing

The case stems from a health law provision that requires most employers to cover birth control as a preventive service, at no charge to women in their health insurance plans. The Trump administration changed the rule in 2017 to allow organizations with religious or moral objections to opt out of coverage without having to provide an alternative avenue for their employees.