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The State of the Union Is … Busy

At last, Congress is getting half of its annual spending bills across the finish line, albeit five months after the start of the fiscal year. Meanwhile, President Joe Biden delivers his annual State of the Union address, an over-the-counter birth control pill is (finally) available, and controversy erupts over new public health guidelines for covid-19 isolation. Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico, Sarah Karlin-Smith of the Pink Sheet, and Sandhya Raman of CQ Roll Call join KFF Health News’ Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more. Also this week, Rovner interviews Neera Tanden, the White House domestic policy adviser, about Biden’s health agenda. Plus, for “extra credit,” the panelists suggest health policy stories they read this week that they think you should read, too.

KFF Health News' 'What the Health?': Biden Wins Early Court Test for Medicare Drug Negotiations

A federal district court judge dismissed a lawsuit attempting to invalidate the Biden administration’s Medicare prescription-drug price negotiation program. But the suit turned on a technicality, and several more court challenges are in the pipeline. Meanwhile, health policy pops up in Super Bowl ads, as Congress approaches yet another funding deadline. Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico, Lauren Weber of The Washington Post, and Rachel Cohrs of Stat join KFF Health News’ Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more. Plus, for “extra credit,” the panelists suggest health policy stories they read this week they think you should read, too.

Do We Simply Not Care About Old People?

Recently, thousands of older Americans have been dying weekly of covid. But most Americans aren’t wearing masks in public, a move that could prevent infections. Many at-risk seniors aren’t getting antiviral therapies, and older adults in nursing homes aren’t getting vaccines. Why?

The AMA Wants a Medicare Cut Reversed – And Lawmakers To Stay Out of Care

Congress is back this week and feverishly working on a bipartisan agreement to fund the government for the rest of the 2024 fiscal year. Ahead of a potential vote, I spoke with Jesse Ehrenfeld, the president of the American Medical Association, the nation’s largest lobby group for doctors, about his organization’s priorities in Washington.  Some […]

Republicans Once Championed Public Health. What Happened?

It wasn’t that long ago that Republicans were all-in on boosting public health spending. “The highest investment priority in Washington should be to double the federal budget for scientific research,” former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) wrote in a 1999 op-ed in The Washington Post. Big spending increases for the National Institutes of Health soon […]

Desantis, Newsom to Tangle Over Hot-Button Health Issues

Florida’s Republican presidential hopeful, Ron DeSantis,and Democratic firebrand Gavin Newsom of California square off today in a contest of governors that can best be described as the debate to determine ¿quién es más macho? — who is more manly — about protecting your freedoms.  Both men have led their respective states since 2019, and they’ve […]