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KFF Health News' 'What the Health?': Nursing Home Staffing Rules Prompt Pushback

Podcast

The nursing home industry — as well as a healthy number of Congress members — are all pushing back on the Biden administration’s new rules on nursing home staffing. Industry officials say that there are not enough workers to meet the requirements and that the costs would be prohibitive. Meanwhile, Democrats on Capitol Hill are trying to force Republicans to explain their exact positions on assuring access to contraceptives and in vitro fertilization. Rachel Cohrs Zhang of Stat, Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico, and Sandhya Raman of CQ Roll Call join KFF Health News’ Julie Rovner to discuss these stories and more. Also this week, Rovner interviews KFF Health News’ Bram Sable-Smith, who reported and wrote the latest KFF Health News-NPR “Bill of the Month” feature about a free cruise that turned out to be anything but.

KFF Health News' 'What the Health?': Waiting for SCOTUS

Podcast

June is when the Supreme Court typically issues rulings in the major cases it hears during that year’s term. This year, those interested in health policy are awaiting decisions in two abortion-related cases and one that could reshuffle the way health policies (and all other federal policies) are made. In this special episode, KFF’s Laurie Sobel, associate director for women’s health policy, joins Julie Rovner for a review of the cases and a preview of how the court might rule.

Psychoactive Drugs Are Having a Moment. The FDA Will Soon Weigh In.

KFF Health News Original

Mounting evidence suggests psychoactive drugs including LSD, ketamine, mushrooms, and MDMA can be powerful treatments for severe depression and PTSD. But not everyone is convinced. And even if such drugs gain FDA approval, safety protocols could render them extremely expensive.

KFF Health News' 'What the Health?': Abortion Access Changing Again in Florida and Arizona

Podcast

A six-week abortion ban took effect in Florida this week, dramatically restricting access to the procedure not just in the nation’s third-most-populous state but across the South. Patients from states with even more restrictive bans had been flooding in since the overturn of Roe v. Wade in 2022. Meanwhile, the CEO of the health behemoth UnitedHealth Group appeared before committees in both the House and Senate, where lawmakers grilled him about the February cyberattack on subsidiary Change Healthcare and how its ramifications are being felt months later. Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico, Sarah Karlin-Smith of the Pink Sheet, and Rachana Pradhan of KFF Health News join KFF Health News’ Julie Rovner to discuss these stories and more. Plus, for “extra credit,” the panelists suggest health policy stories they read this week they think you should read, too.

Colorado Isn’t Giving up on Its Drug Importation Dream

KFF Health News Original

Colorado hopes to join Florida to become only the second state authorized to import prescription drugs from Canada. But they’re hitting the same hurdles: drugmakers — and the FDA. Colorado officials recently amended their 2022 importation application with the Food and Drug Administration, in the process revealing new correspondence that shows the state’s so-far fruitless […]

Toxic Gas That Sterilizes Medical Devices Prompts Safety Rule Update

KFF Health News Original

The Environmental Protection Agency is tightening regulation of ethylene oxide, a carcinogenic gas used to sterilize medical devices. The agency is trying to balance the interests of the health care industry supply chain with those of communities where the gas creates airborne health risks.