Latest KFF Health News Stories
A year ago, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention awarded states and local health departments $2.25 billion to help people of color and other populations at higher risk from covid. But a KHN review shows public health agencies across the country have been slow to spend it.
Dictionaries, public comments, and even an old court case that involved underwear pricing could play a role as the government appeals a ruling that sharply limits federal authority during pandemics.
Congress is back in session, but covid diagnoses for Vice President Kamala Harris and two Democratic senators have temporarily left the Senate without a working majority to approve continued covid funding. Meanwhile, opponents of the Affordable Care Act have filed yet another lawsuit challenging a portion of the law, and we say goodbye to the late Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah, who left a long legacy of health laws. Rachel Cohrs of STAT News, Anna Edney of Bloomberg News, and Rebecca Adams of KHN join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more.
The research is clear that improving indoor air quality is an essential tool in stemming the spread of covid and a host of other diseases. But companies have to be willing to invest.
Congress is in recess, so the slower-than-average news week gives us a chance to catch up on underreported topics, like Medicare’s coverage decision for the controversial Alzheimer’s disease drug Aduhelm and ominous new statistics on drug overdose deaths and sexually transmitted diseases. Margot Sanger-Katz of The New York Times, Joanne Kenen of Politico and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more. Plus, for extra credit, the panelists recommend their favorite health policy stories of the week they think you should read, too.
President Joe Biden’s Cabinet members are fanning out across the country to promote benefits coming to rural America from covid relief and infrastructure legislation.
It is a perilous time to throw low- and middle-income Americans off the insurance cliff: A new omicron subvariant is spreading, and a program that provided coronavirus testing and covid-19 treatment at no cost to the uninsured has expired.
The more than $16 billion, decade-long effort by the Department of Veterans Affairs was designed to provide seamless electronic health records for patients from enlistment in the military past discharge.
The Biden administration unveiled a new special enrollment option aimed at signing up low-income Americans for Affordable Care Act coverage — even if it is outside of the usual annual open enrollment period. But insurers are cutting broker commissions at the same time.
Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) are seeking to craft a compromise that members from both parties could accept. Their plan, still being ironed out, would not guarantee a specific limit on out-of-pocket costs but seeks to roll back insulin prices by barring rebate payments to pharmacy benefit managers.
In his proposed budget, President Joe Biden called for a boost in health spending that includes billions of dollars to prepare for a future pandemic. But that doesn’t include money he says is needed immediately for testing and treating covid-19. Also this week, federal regulators authorized a second booster shot for people 50 and older yet gave little guidance to consumers about who needs the shot and when. Amy Goldstein of The Washington Post, Jennifer Haberkorn of the Los Angeles Times, and Rachana Pradhan of KHN join KHN’s Mary Agnes Carey to discuss these issues and more. Plus, Julie Rovner interviews KHN’s Julie Appleby, who reported and wrote the latest KHN-NPR “Bill of the Month” episode about a very expensive air ambulance ride.
Sens. Robert Casey Jr. and Ron Wyden want a probe into what barriers are keeping Medicaid plans from reaching enrollees.
Relatives who often provide vital caregiving for nursing home residents say the lockdowns during the covid pandemic showed the need for family members to visit in person with their loved ones. About a dozen states have passed laws guaranteeing that right, and California is considering one.
The White House makes a move as a new wave of covid threatens. President Joe Biden brings in Dr. Ashish Jha to take over the executive branch effort. Meanwhile, it remains unclear if and when Congress can come up with the funds to continue much of the federal anti-covid effort. Joanne Kenen of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Politico, Sandhya Raman of CQ Roll Call, and Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more.
The Biden administration’s request for billions more in funding to fight covid-19 hit a snag on Capitol Hill this week, as Democrats objected to Republican demands that money allocated to states but not yet spent be reclaimed. Meanwhile, the big annual spending bill about to cross the finish line addresses other health policy changes, such as giving the FDA authority to regulate “synthetic” nicotine. Joanne Kenen of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Politico, Rachel Cohrs of Stat, and Jessie Hellmann of Modern Healthcare join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more. Plus, for extra credit, the panelists recommend their favorite health policy stories of the week they think you should read, too.
Spun off from the ailing but not-quite-dead Build Back Better legislation, a popular proposal to cap out-of-pocket insulin costs at $35 a month faces tough political realities that could kill it.
President Joe Biden spent a large portion of his first State of the Union address talking about foreign affairs, but he also spent time on an array of health topics, including mental health, nursing home regulation, and toxic burn pits. Also this week, the administration unveiled a strategy to address the covid pandemic going forward. Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico, Amy Goldstein of The Washington Post, and Sarah Karlin-Smith of the Pink Sheet join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more. Plus, for extra credit, the panelists recommend their favorite health policy stories of the week they think you should read, too.
CMS chief Chiquita Brooks-LaSure says the agency reserves its power to quickly institute new regulations for “absolute emergencies.” On staffing, nursing home residents might need to wait years to see any real change.
What a difference a year makes. The speech was delivered to a largely unmasked crowd of lawmakers, justices, and Cabinet members in the House chamber.
Almost a year after the American Rescue Plan Act allocated what could amount to $25 billion to home and community-based services run by Medicaid, many states have yet to access much of the money due to delays and red tape.