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Julie Rovner

Kaiser Well being Information


Learn Julie’s Tales

Mary Agnes Carey

Kaiser Well being Information


Learn Mary Agnes’ Tales

Joanne Kenen



Learn Joanne’s Tales

Kimberly Leonard

Washington Examiner


Learn Kimberly’s Tales

Well being spending within the U.S. grew to $3.6 trillion in 2018, in accordance with a brand new report from the federal authorities. The speed of development — 4.6% — was up barely from 2017’s 4.2%, even supposing practically 1,000,000 extra People lacked insurance coverage.

In the meantime, Congress has lower than two weeks to complete a 12 months’s price of labor, together with the spending payments required to maintain the federal government operating and promised laws to deal with “shock” medical payments and prescription drug costs.

This week’s panelists are Julie Rovner of Kaiser Well being Information, Kimberly Leonard of the Washington Examiner, Joanne Kenen of Politico and Mary Agnes Carey of Kaiser Well being Information.

Among the many takeaways from this week’s podcast:

The share of the economic system spent on well being care really declined barely from 2017 to 2018 — from 17.9% to 17.7%. However that can come as small solace to customers, for whom prices appear to be ever-rising. And it’s customers’ issues driving the political well being debate.
Congress doesn’t seem more likely to cross particular person spending payments earlier than the present federal spending invoice expires Dec. 20. It seems they might have one other short-term invoice that might seemingly fund the federal government till February or March.
That short-term invoice is a tempting goal for individuals advocating for the everlasting repeal of the Reasonably priced Care Act’s Cadillac tax on beneficiant well being plans or a measure to assist customers keep away from shock medical payments once they get sudden care from a physician or hospital that isn’t of their insurer’s community of suppliers.
Democrats operating for president have targeted a lot of their well being debate on whether or not to maneuver towards a “Medicare for All” plan or another authorities possibility, resembling permitting individuals to hitch Medicare in the event that they lack insurance coverage. However even that scaled-back notion could possibly be extraordinarily disruptive to the employer insurance coverage market. Then once more, that’s what opponents of the ACA predicted, too, but the legislation didn’t trigger employers to drop protection in massive numbers.
Current experiences have documented a tense relationship between Well being and Human Companies Secretary Alex Azar and Seema Verma, the top of the Facilities for Medicare & Medicaid Companies. It’s not simply private — the disputes are having a really actual impression on the work of the division.
A Senate committee this week accredited the nomination of Stephen Hahn to be the top of the Meals and Drug Administration. Though some senators raised questions concerning the White Home’s obvious step again from banning flavored vaping merchandise, it seems that Hahn’s nomination is more likely to be accredited by the complete Senate.

Additionally this week, Rovner interviews KHN’s Markian Hawryluk, who wrote the {latest} KHN-NPR “Invoice of the Month” installment concerning the excessive value of eradicating a doll shoe from a toddler’s nostril. When you’ve got an outrageous medical invoice you want to share with us, you are able to do that right here.

Plus, for additional credit score, the panelists advocate their favourite well being coverage tales of the week they suppose you need to learn, too:

Julie Rovner: The New York Instances’ “How a Divided Left Is Shedding the Battle on Abortion,” by Elizabeth Dias and Lisa Lerer

Joanne Kenen: The BBC’s “How a incorrect injection helped trigger Samoa’s measles epidemic

Kimberly Leonard: The Los Angeles Instances’ “Their children died on the psych ward. They had been removed from alone, a Instances investigation discovered,” by Soumya Karlamangla

Mary Agnes Carey: The Washington Publish’s “How a battle over well being care entangled Elizabeth Warren — and reshaped the Democratic presidential race,” by Annie Linskey, Jeff Stein and Dan Balz

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Kaiser Well being Information (KHN) is a nationwide well being coverage information service. It’s an editorially unbiased program of the Henry J. Kaiser Household Basis which isn’t affiliated with Kaiser Permanente.

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