The twists and turns of the American health system can sometimes leave people lost, confused and looking for answers. We’ve created a new video series — “Explained by KHN” — in which our correspondents and editors answer common health care and health policy questions. The… Read More »‘Explained by KHN’: Health Insurance Help in Covid Relief Law
Insurance technology startup Bright Health has purchased Zipnosis, which provides telehealth services. Though details of the new transaction are sparse, the acquisition aims to lower healthcare costs and expand access to quality care.
Insurance startup Bright Health is reportedly planning to raise up to $1 billion in an IPO that will be launched in the second quarter of 2021. The company, which provides several insurance products as well as an IT platform, could be valued at more than… Read More »Report: Bright Health eyes $1B IPO
Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. Congress is out of session, but that hasn’t stopped Democrats from planning their next round of health legislation. Together with President Joe Biden, they are looking at a broad array of possibilities, from allowing Medicare… Read More »KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Planning for Round Two
Indiana’s Medicaid expansion — with its “personal responsibility” provisions that require enrollees to pay monthly premiums and manage health savings accounts — proved no better at improving health and access to care than other state expansions, a federally commissioned study found. Use Our Content It… Read More »Indiana’s Medicaid Expansion — Designed by Pence and Verma — Panned in Federal Report
In California’s Mendocino County, public health officials and community clinics say they have hit their vaccination stride. This story also ran on The Mendocino Beacon. It can be republished for free. Despite the county’s remoteness and its largely rural population spread among wooded mountains, rugged… Read More »In California, Blue Shield’s Vaccination Takeover Fixes What Wasn’t Broken
Reporter Fred Mogul discussed how college students are using loopholes to get vaccinated for travel with Newsy on Thursday. Click here to watch Mogul on Newsy Read Mogul’s “Some Dream — Others Scheme — To Find a Vaccine Before Spring Break” California politics correspondent Samantha… Read More »Journalists Dish on Vaccination Loopholes and Alliances
KHN has put together an interactive tool of significant health policies implemented by the Trump administration using its own authority — executive orders, agency guidance or formal regulations — and is tracking Biden administration and court actions. We will update this chart as actions are… Read More »The Great Undoing: Which of Trump’s Policies Will Biden Reverse?
Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. As questions swirl about the covid vaccine made by AstraZeneca, public health experts are worried the confusion could create more doubts among people already hesitant to get a vaccine. Meanwhile, the first Senate-confirmed officials are… Read More »KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Getting Down to Work at HHS
When Democrats pushed through a two-year expansion of the Affordable Care Act in the covid-relief bill this month, many people celebrated the part that will make health insurance more affordable for more Americans. This story also ran on NPR. It can be republished for free.… Read More »Democrats Gave Americans a Big Boost Buying Health Insurance. It Didn’t Come Cheap.
There’s something for everyone with private health insurance in the American Rescue Plan Act, but determining the best way to benefit may be confusing. This story also ran on NBC News. It can be republished for free. The $1.9 trillion covid relief law that President… Read More »Lots of Health Insurance Help in Covid Relief Law — But Do Your Homework First
A cost-saving change in Medicare launched in the final days of the Trump administration will cut payments to hospitals for some surgical procedures while potentially raising costs and confusion for patients. This story also ran on The Washington Post. It can be republished for free.… Read More »Under New Cost-Cutting Medicare Rule, Same Surgery, Same Place, Different Bill
Reporter LJ Dawson discussed how undocumented immigrants have been left out of the pandemic relief package with Newsy on Tuesday. Click here to watch Dawson on Newsy Read Dawson’s “Without a Pandemic Safety Net, Immigrants Living Illegally in US Fall Through the Cracks“ KHN correspondent… Read More »Journalists Analyze the Covid Relief Bill
SACRAMENTO — Gavin Newsom was just making a name for himself as mayor of San Francisco in 2005 when Blue Shield of California wrote him its first major check. USE OUR CONTENT It can be republished for free. The young, business-friendly Democrat had exploded onto… Read More »Blue Shield Spent Years Cultivating a Relationship with Newsom. It Got the State Vaccine Contract.
[UPDATED at 1 p.m. ET] For employees of small businesses in Montana suddenly laid off during the covid-19 pandemic, maintaining health insurance coverage could be a struggle. This story also ran on Fortune. It can be republished for free. Employers with 20 or more workers… Read More »Covid-Inspired Montana Health Insurance Proposal Wouldn’t Kick In for 2 Years
Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. The covid relief bill signed by President Joe Biden a week ago includes billions of dollars in new health benefits for consumers. But those benefits may be hard for people to take advantage of because… Read More »KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: ACA Packs More Benefits — And More Confusion
In the nation’s battle against the diabetes epidemic, the go-to weapon being aggressively promoted to patients is as small as a quarter and worn on the belly or arm. This story also ran on NBC News. It can be republished for free. A continuous glucose… Read More »‘Painless’ Glucose Monitors Pushed Despite Little Evidence They Help Most Diabetes Patients
President Joe Biden’s goal of providing health care for more Americans advanced this week with his signing of an economic stimulus package that includes subsidies for health insurance premiums and new incentives for states to expand Medicaid, as well as the potential confirmation of Xavier… Read More »Analysis: The Trump Health Care Policies That Deserve to Stick Around
HELENA, Mont. — When the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation began offering telehealth services in Montana in early February, the nation’s largest nonprofit addiction treatment provider promised quality care for far-flung residents without their even having to leave home. This story also ran on Fortune. It… Read More »The Boom in Out-of-State Telehealth Threatens In-State Providers
Use Our Content It can be republished for free. Rickie Andersen took a brief break from work in March after she fell ill. Her cough, fever and chills were typical covid-19 symptoms, but coronavirus tests were so scarce she could not obtain one to confirm… Read More »For Covid ‘Long Haulers,’ Battling for Disability Benefits Adds Aggravation to Exhaustion
This story also ran on NPR. It can be republished for free. As President Joe Biden’s pandemic relief package steams through Congress, Democrats have hitched a ride for a top health care priority: strengthening the Affordable Care Act with some of the most significant changes… Read More »Pandemic Aid Package Includes Relief From High Premiums
Letters to the Editor is a periodic feature. We welcome all comments and will publish a selection. We edit for length and clarity and require full names. How to Explain Vaccines to People Who Resist Them Here is an attempt to write something that might convince people who… Read More »Readers and Tweeters Dispense Timely Advice for Difficult Times
“Becerra supports Bernie’s government takeover of your health care, eliminating your employer-provided coverage.” — TV ad funded by Cotton for Senate, Feb. 22 This story was produced in partnership with PolitiFact. It can be republished for free. A digital ad running in Georgia and New Hampshire… Read More »Becerra Has Long Backed Single-Payer. That Doesn’t Mean It Will Happen if He’s HHS Secretary.
Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. More than a month into President Joe Biden’s term, nominees to fill some of the top posts at the Department of Health and Human Services are finally getting confirmation hearings in the Senate, starting with… Read More »KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Staffing Up at HHS
USE OUR CONTENT It can be republished for free. Karen Bailey’s 20-year-old daughter has struggled with depression and anxiety for years. Since 2017, she’s been in three intensive group therapy programs and, each time, the family’s insurer cut her coverage short, says Bailey. “At a… Read More »New California Law Makes It Easier to Get Care for Mental Health and Substance Abuse
Insurance startup Oscar Health plans to price its IPO between $32 and $34 per share. The New York-based startup plans to trade on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker “OSCR.”
Use Our Content It can be republished for free. SACRAMENTO — A group of Democratic state lawmakers introduced legislation Friday to create a single-payer health care system to cover all Californians, immediately defining the biggest health policy debate of the year and putting enormous political… Read More »New Single-Payer Bill Intensifies Newsom’s Political Peril
President Joe Biden has an unexpected opening to cut deals with red states to expand Medicaid, raising the prospect that the new administration could extend health protections to millions of uninsured Americans and reach a goal that has eluded Democrats for a decade. The opportunity… Read More »Why Biden Has a Chance to Cut Deals With Red State Holdouts on Medicaid
Para quienes han estado sin seguro médico durante la pandemia, el alivio ya está a la vista. En enero, el presidente Joe Biden firmó una orden ejecutiva para abrir el mercado federal de seguros de salud durante tres meses, desde el lunes 15, para que… Read More »Los mercados de seguros de salud reabrieron. Esto es lo que necesitas saber
This story also ran on NPR. It can be republished for free. For people who’ve been without health insurance during the pandemic, relief is in sight. In January, President Joe Biden signed an executive order to open up the federal health insurance marketplace for three… Read More »The ACA Marketplace Is Open Again for Insurance Sign-Ups. Here’s What You Need to Know.
This story also ran on Fortune. It can be republished for free. On Jan. 14 at 8:43 p.m., Patrick McKenzie tweeted a plea for tech engineers to help him set up a website to track covid-19 vaccine availability in California. McKenzie, who heads a Bay… Read More »Tech Companies Mobilize to Schedule Vaccine Appointments, But Often Fall Short
Oscar Health filed preliminary paperwork for an IPO on Friday. The health insurance startup is betting that its technology can give it an edge as it fights for market share with bigger competitors.
The Biden administration established a special enrollment period to give uninsured Americans a chance to sign up for insurance on the HealthCare.gov markets. Providers and payers applauded the announcement, but it remains to be seen whether the move will encourage people to get insured.
Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. Thursday was “health day” in President Joe Biden’s sprint to launch his presidency, and he signed two executive orders addressing health coverage and women’s reproductive rights. The orders will reopen enrollment under the Affordable Care… Read More »KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: The Long Road to Unwinding Trump Health Policies
In the nine months leading up to her due date, Kayla Kjelshus and her husband, Mikkel, meticulously planned for their daughter’s arrival. This story also ran on NPR. It can be republished for free. Their long to-do list included mapping out their family’s health insurance… Read More »Baby Blues: First-Time Parents Blindsided by ‘the Birthday Rule’ and a $207,455 NICU Bill
The new startup unicorn’s insurance product enables members to shop for medical services and pay directly for care. The company raised $125 million in a recent funding round, boosting its valuation, which it will use to increase its footprint and launch new products.
Joe Biden ran on an expansive health care platform during his 2020 presidential campaign, with a broad array of promises such as adding a government-sponsored health plan to the Affordable Care Act and lowering prescription drug prices. Perhaps most significantly, he pledged to get control… Read More »Health Issues Carried Weight on the Campaign Trail. What Could Biden Do in His First 100 Days?
Anita Baron first noticed something was wrong in August 2018, when she began to drool. Her dentist chalked it up to a problem with her jaw. Then her speech became slurred. She managed to keep her company, which offers financing to small businesses, going, but… Read More »After a Decade of Lobbying, ALS Patients Gain Faster Access to Disability Payments
Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen. As we settle into the new year, we have two small doses of good news. First, a new federal rule could help cut through one health care issue. Host Dan Weissmann talked about the rule — which… Read More »‘An Arm and a Leg’: Host Dan Weissmann Talks Price Transparency on ‘Axios Today’
Ante la pandemia, los demócratas han abogado por ayudas más generosas, más presión sobre las farmacéuticas para que bajen los precios y más atención al racismo sistémico en la atención de salud. El 20 de enero, con el control del Senado y la Cámara de… Read More »Aunque controlen el Senado, demócratas necesitarán apoyo republicano en temas clave de salud
Use Our Content It can be republished for free. Democrats have argued for more generous pandemic relief, more pressure on drugmakers to lower prices and more attention to systemic racism in health care. On Jan. 20, with control of the Senate and the House of… Read More »Even With Senate Control, Democrats Will Need Buy-In From GOP on Key Health Priorities
Use Our Content It can be republished for free. With just a dozen days left in power, the Trump administration on Friday approved a radically different Medicaid financing system in Tennessee that for the first time would give the state broad authority in running the… Read More »Trump Administration Approves First Medicaid Block Grant, in Tennessee
The party split in Congress is so slim that, even with Democrats technically in the majority, passing major health care legislation will be extremely difficult. So speculation about President-elect Joe Biden’s health agenda has focused on the things he can accomplish using executive authority. Although… Read More »Biden’s First Order of Business May Be to Undo Trump’s Policies, but It Won’t Be Easy
Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. Surprise Democratic victories in Georgia’s two runoff elections this week will give Democrats control of the Senate, which means they will be in charge of both houses of Congress and the White House for the… Read More »KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Georgia Turns the Senate Blue
Como jefa de enfermería en uno de los hospitales más concurridos de la red de seguridad de atención médica de Chicago, Raquel Prendkowski ha sido testigo del devastador número de víctimas que COVID-19 ha causado entre los residentes más vulnerables de la ciudad, incluyendo a… Read More »Illinois, primer estado en ofrecer cobertura médica a adultos mayores indocumentados
As a nurse manager for one of Chicago’s busiest safety-net hospitals, Raquel Prendkowski has witnessed covid-19’s devastating toll on many of the city’s most vulnerable residents — including people who lack health insurance because of their immigration status. Some come in so sick they go… Read More »Illinois Is First in the Nation to Extend Health Coverage to Undocumented Seniors
Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen. This episode turns the tables: Host Dan Weissmann gets interviewed about what he learned in 2020 and what’s ahead for the show — with T.K. Dutes, a radio host and podcast-maker who is also a former nurse,… Read More »‘An Arm and a Leg’: A Look Back at 2020 — What We Learned and Where We’re Headed
Ted Howard started taking Truvada a few years ago because he wanted to protect himself against HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. But the daily pill was so pricey he was seriously thinking about giving it up. Under his insurance plan, the former flight attendant… Read More »Many Health Plans Now Must Cover Full Cost of Expensive HIV Prevention Drugs
Hospitals face the new year with new requirements to post price information they have long sought to obscure: the actual prices negotiated with insurers and the discounts they offer their cash-paying customers. The move is part of a larger push by the Trump administration to… Read More »Hospital Prices Just Got a Lot More Transparent. What Does This Mean for You?
This story is from a reporting partnership that includes WABE, NPR and KHN. It can be republished for free. Vice President Mike Pence was the clear celebrity draw at a Nov. 20 campaign event for Georgia’s two incumbent U.S. senators, Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue.… Read More »Democrats Are Running Hard on Health Care in Georgia’s Senate Runoffs. Republicans? Not So Much.
On the heels of a $140 million funding round, insurance startup Oscar Health confidentially filed for an IPO.
Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. Congress appears to be inching ever closer to agreement on a long-delayed COVID-19 relief bill, which would extend unemployment insurance and other emergency programs set to expire in the next several days. That bill, however,… Read More »KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: All I Want for Christmas Is a COVID Relief Bill
Letters to the Editor is a periodic feature. We welcome all comments and will publish a selection. We edit for length and clarity and require full names. The demand for skilled nurses during the pandemic is through the roof! Travel nurses command a hefty salary and they… Read More »Readers and Tweeters Defend Front-Line Nurses and Blind Us With Science
Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen. When host Dan Weissmann and his wife set out to pick a health insurance plan for next year, they realized that keeping the plan they have means paying $200 a month more. But would a “cheaper” plan… Read More »‘An Arm and a Leg’: Shopping for Health Insurance? Here’s How One Family Tried to Pick a Plan
SACRAMENTO — President-elect Joe Biden didn’t back “Medicare for All” during his campaign. Yet his choice of California Attorney General Xavier Becerra to serve in the nation’s top health care post is fueling California lawmakers’ most progressive health care dreams, including pursuing a government-run single-payer… Read More »With Becerra as HHS Pick, California Plots More Progressive Health Care Agenda
SoftBank’s second Vision Fund led the recent funding round. Pear plans to use it to accelerate reimbursement coverage for its three FDA-cleared products.
El presidente electo Joe Biden nombró al fiscal general de California, Xavier Becerra, para dirigir el Departamento de Salud y Servicios Humanos (HHS) de los Estados Unidos. Becerra, quien sería el primer secretario latino del HHS, ha tomado algunas posiciones innovadoras en atención de salud,… Read More »Xavier Becerra en sus propias palabras: “La atención de salud es un derecho”
President-elect Joe Biden has tapped California Attorney General Xavier Becerra to lead the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Becerra, who would be the nation’s first Latino HHS secretary, has taken some ground-breaking positions on health care, especially since he became attorney general in… Read More »Xavier Becerra in His Own Words: ‘Health Care Is a Right’
Use Our Content It can be republished for free. SACRAMENTO — California Democratic lawmakers so far have failed to convince Gov. Gavin Newsom that the state can afford to spend an estimated $2.6 billion a year to expand its Medicaid program to all unauthorized immigrants.… Read More »California Lawmakers to Newsom: Give All Immigrants Health Coverage
Until October, Andrea LaRew was paying $950 a month for health insurance through her job at the Northwest Douglas County Chamber & Economic Development Corp. in the metro Denver area. Her company didn’t contribute anything toward the premium. Plus, LaRew and her husband had a… Read More »Trump Rule Gives Small Companies a New Tool to Help Workers Buy Health Coverage
People buying their own health insurance have even more to think about this year, particularly those post-COVID-19 patients with lingering health concerns, the “long haulers,” who join the club of Americans with preexisting conditions. What type of plan is best for someone with an unpredictable,… Read More »During ACA Open Enrollment, Picking a Plan Invites New COVID Complications
Millions of Americans without healthcare insurance could be eligible to get coverage for free, or nearly free, through financial assistance offered under the Affordable Care Act. But many who recently lost their employer-based coverage may not be aware of the options available to them.
Adam Woodrum was out for a bike ride with his wife and kids on July 19 when his then 9-year-old son, Robert, crashed. “He cut himself pretty bad, and I could tell right away he needed stitches,” said Woodrum. This story also ran on NPR.… Read More »After Kid’s Minor Bike Accident, Major Bill Sets Legal Wheels in Motion
The notice from the federal health insurance marketplace grabbed Andrew Schenker’s attention: ACT NOW: YOU’RE AT RISK OF LOSING FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE STARTING JANUARY 1, 2021. As he read the notice, though, the Blacksburg, Virginia, resident became exasperated. Schenker, his wife and their teenage son have… Read More »Were You Notified About Missing Tax Forms for Your ACA Subsidy? Blame COVID.
KHN Midwest correspondent Lauren Weber discussed COVID-19 surges in Wisconsin with Wisconsin Public Radio’s “Central Time” on Nov. 13. Click here to hear Weber on Wisconsin Public Radio California Healthline correspondent Angela Hart and editor Emily Bazar discussed how the Supreme Court case about the… Read More »KHN on the Air This Week
Lightened telehealth regulations have expanded access to virtual visits for therapy and other mental health surges. But many patients still aren’t having their needs met.
Health insurance companies will have to give their customers estimated out-of-pocket costs for prescription drugs and disclose to the public the negotiated prices they pay for drugs, under an unexpected new Trump administration rule. The administration said those requirements, part of a broader rule issued… Read More »Surprise Federal Drug Rule Directs Insurers to Reveal What They Pay for Prescription Drugs
Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen. A listener asked: ‘How do I remain cool when calling insurance companies?” So we called veteran self-defense teacher Lauren Taylor for advice. She leads Defend Yourself, an organization that works to empower people against violence and abuse. … Read More »‘An Arm and a Leg’: For Your Next Health Insurance Fight, an Exercise in Financial Self-Defense
Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. Five days after the election was called for President-elect Joe Biden, President Donald Trump has not conceded — and instead ordered his administration not to begin the transition of power. That could have serious… Read More »KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Transition Interrupted
Michelina Moen lost her job and health insurance in April. Only weeks earlier she had begun to feel ill and not her usual energetic self — in what she describes as a textbook case of “really bad timing.” The Orlando, Florida, resident sought treatment in… Read More »Workers Who Lost Jobs Due to COVID May Need Help Getting Coverage This Fall
The health insurer and Michigan-based physician organization are partnering to expand access to in-network care for around 40,000 individual and group Medicare Advantage plan members. The partnership will go into effect Dec. 1.
Sacramento.- Cuando la Corte Suprema de los Estados Unidos esté escuchando el martes 10 un caso que podría decidir el destino de la Ley de Cuidado de Salud a Bajo Precio (ACA), California liderará la defensa de la ley federal que impacta en casi todos… Read More »Fiscal general de California: los jueces deben ver que ACA es “indispensable”
SACRAMENTO — When the U.S. Supreme Court hears a case Tuesday that could decide the fate of the Affordable Care Act, California will be leading the defense to uphold the federal law that touches nearly every aspect of the country’s health care system. It’s usually… Read More »Justices Bound to See ACA as ‘Indispensable,’ Says Californian Leading Defense
The Supreme Court on Tuesday will hear oral arguments in a case that, for the third time in eight years, could result in the justices striking down the Affordable Care Act. The case, California v. Texas, is the result of a change to the health… Read More »What to Know as ACA Heads to Supreme Court — Again
Former Vice President Joe Biden secured the 270 electoral votes needed to capture the White House on Saturday, major news organizations projected, after election officials in a handful of swing states spent days in round-the-clock counting of millions of mail-in ballots and early votes. The… Read More »Biden Wins, but His Health Agenda Dims With GOP Likely to Hold Senate
Columnist and California Healthline senior correspondent Bernard J. Wolfson discussed the start of open enrollment for health care plans in California with KPCC’s “Take Two” on Monday. Click here to hear Wolfson on KPCC Read Wolfson’s “It’s Open Enrollment. Here’s What You Need to Know.“… Read More »KHN on the Air This Week
In a review of real-world claims data, Pear Therapeutics found that its digital therapeutic for opioid use disorder resulted in a reduction in spending $2,150 per patient over six months.
Rep. Donna E. Shalala of Florida, the first-term Democratic member of Congress and former Health and Human Services secretary in the Clinton administration, lost her campaign for reelection Tuesday. Shalala’s loss to Maria Elvira Salazar — a Republican and former television journalist who compared Democratic… Read More »Longtime Health Advocate Donna Shalala Loses House Reelection Race
A new survey of U.S. physicians shows that they have differing views on how the payer market needs to evolve, but a vast majority agree that affordable insurance is necessary to provide access to high-quality care while reducing costs.
Democrats are favored to win both chambers of Congress after years of campaign-trail promises about health care. But with a pandemic, a more conservative Supreme Court and lingering disagreements between progressives and moderates, it could be difficult for Democrats to turn those promises into law.… Read More »If They Sweep on Election Day, Dems Still Face a Challenge Meeting Health Promises
Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. White House chief of staff Mark Meadows said this week that “we’re not going to control the pandemic,” effectively conceding that the administration has pivoted from prevention to treatment. But COVID-19 cases are rising rapidly… Read More »KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: As Cases Spike, White House Declares Pandemic Over
“Because our family couldn’t afford health insurance, Obama/Biden penalized us about $10,000, then took that $10,000 and used it to pay for others’ free Obamacare. Trump ended that theft.” In a Facebook post, Oct. 20, 2020 A viral Facebook post claims that former President Barack… Read More »A $10,000 Obamacare Penalty? Doubtful.
Sen. Lindsey Graham has never been a fan of the Affordable Care Act — even though it’s helped dramatically lower the number of uninsured people in his home state of South Carolina. The Republican, who heads the Senate Judiciary Committee, attacked the law at the… Read More »Sen. Graham Complains That 3 Blue States Get a Third of ACA Funding
When Darius Settles died from COVID-19 on the Fourth of July, his family and the city of Nashville, Tennessee, were shocked. Even the mayor noted the passing of a 30-year-old without any underlying conditions — one of the city’s youngest fatalities at that point. Settles… Read More »Hospital Bills for Uninsured COVID Patients Are Covered, but No One Tells Them
App-based driving services such as Uber, Lyft, DoorDash and Instacart are bankrolling California’s Proposition 22, which would keep their drivers classified as independent contractors, not employees. Leading into the Nov. 3 election, the ballot measure — which has become the most expensive in state history… Read More »App-Based Companies Pushing Prop. 22 Say Drivers Will Get Health Benefits. Will They?
President Donald Trump entered office seeking a massive overhaul of the Medicaid program, which had just experienced the biggest growth spurt in its 50-year history. His administration supported repealing the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion, which has added millions of adults to the federal-state health… Read More »The Trump Medicaid Record: Big Goals, Yet Few Successes
When Tiffany Qiu heard how much her surgery was going to cost her, she was sure the hospital’s financial department had made a mistake. Qiu, who already knew from a breast cancer scare earlier that year that her plan required a 30% coinsurance payment on… Read More »Savvy Patient Fought for the Price She Was Quoted − And Didn’t Give Up
If President Donald Trump wins reelection next week, it seems unlikely he will unveil the health plan he’s been promising since before his election in 2016. Still, other aspects of health care could be featured in his second-term agenda. Not having a replacement plan for… Read More »If Trump Wins, Don’t Hold Your Breath Waiting for That ACA Replacement Plan
Insurance startup Bind Benefits just raised $105 million in a Series B funding round to further expand into the fully insured market. CEO Tony Miller sees the company’s health plan product as a way for employers to stay agile while offering insurance in a rapidly… Read More »How Bind Benefits’ CEO will use $105M to upend the health insurance market
During the final presidential debate, President Donald Trump claimed that 180 million people would lose their private health insurance to socialized medicine if the Democratic presidential nominee, former Vice President Joe Biden, is elected president. “They have 180 million people, families under what he wants… Read More »Did Trump Confuse the Public Option With ‘Medicare for All’?
In the second and final debate of the 2020 presidential race, President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden sparred over Trump’s handling of the pandemic and Biden’s plan to reform health care. In stark contrast to the first debate, there was more policy… Read More »In Tamer Debate, Trump and Biden Clash (Again) on President’s Pandemic Response
Facing a pandemic, record unemployment and unknown future costs for COVID-19 treatments, health insurers selling Affordable Care Act plans to individuals reacted by lowering rates in some areas and, overall, issuing only modest premium increases for 2021. “What’s been fascinating is that carriers in general… Read More »Even With ACA’s Fate in Flux, Open Enrollment Starts Soon. Here’s What’s New.
After Nebraskans cast their vote for Medicaid expansion in 2018, the state is finally expanding coverage to more residents. As part of the state’s rollout, it split its expanded Medicaid plans into two tiers, with work and other requirements to access dental and vision coverage.
When it announced plans to go public through a blank-check company, Clover Health shared ambitious projections for its future membership. Much of that growth is pinned on plans to launch a direct contracting business.
Health insurance costs for Americans who get their coverage through work continued a relentless march upward with average family premiums rising 4% to $21,342 this year, according to a study published Thursday. The annual survey by KFF found workers on average are paying nearly $5,600… Read More »Job-Based Health Insurance Costs Are Up 4% This Year, 55% in Past Decade
Within one day, President Donald Trump announced his COVID diagnosis and was admitted to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center for treatment. The flurry of events was stunning, confusing and triggered many questions. What was his prognosis? When was he last tested for COVID-19? What… Read More »Does the Federal Health Information Privacy Law Protect President Trump?
The Affordable Care Act, facing its first test during a deep recession, is providing a refuge for some — but by no means all — people who have lost health coverage as the economy has been battered by the coronavirus pandemic. New studies, from both… Read More »Refuge in the Storm? ACA’s Role as Safety Net Is Tested by COVID Recession
Throughout the 2020 election cycle, candidates’ positions on health care have been particularly important for voters with underlying and often expensive medical needs — in short, those with preexisting conditions. It’s no surprise, then, that protections for people who have chronic health problems like diabetes… Read More »Fighting for Patient Protections While Attacking ACA — Hard to Have It Both Ways
Medicare Advantage startup Clover Health will go public in a blank-check acquisition led by billionaire Chamath Palihapitiya. The deal will value Clover at $3.7 billion.
The insurer plans to increase the footprint for its Medicare Advantage plans by 50%, adding plans in 300 additional counties.
KHN senior correspondent Sarah Jane Tribble appeared on Newsy’s “Morning Rush” on Thursday to discuss rural hospital closures and KHN’s brand-new “Where It Hurts” podcast. Click here to watch Tribble on Newsy Tribble hosts “No Mercy,” the first season of “Where It Hurts.” Click here… Read More »KHN on the Air This Week
The first minutes of Tuesday’s presidential debate immediately turned to how President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee to replace Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg could undo the Affordable Care Act and its protections for people with preexisting conditions. “There’s 100 million people that have preexisting conditions,”… Read More »Biden’s in the Ballpark on How Many People Have Preexisting Conditions
The two companies had been negotiating a six-year value-based contract prior to the start of the pandemic. Allina and BCBS of Minnesota expect the agreement will affect roughly 130,000 patients.
La temporada de influenza se verá diferente este año, ya que los Estados Unidos se enfrentan a una pandemia de coronavirus que ya ha matado a más de 176.000 personas. Muchos estadounidenses son reacios a ir al médico y los funcionarios de salud pública temen… Read More »COVID + Influenza: éste es un buen año para vacunarse, aconsejan expertos
Flu season will look different this year, as the country grapples with a coronavirus pandemic that has killed more than 172,000 people. Many Americans are reluctant to visit a doctor’s office and public health officials worry people will shy away from being immunized. Although sometimes… Read More »COVID + Influenza: This Is a Good Year to Get a Flu Shot, Experts Advise
In the 2014 elections, Republicans rode a wave of anti-Affordable Care Act sentiment to pick up nine Senate seats, the largest gain for either party since 1980. Newly elected Republicans such as Cory Gardner in Colorado and Steve Daines in Montana had hammered their Democratic… Read More »Opposition to Obamacare Becomes Political Liability for GOP Incumbents
Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. The “What the Health?” panelists are taking a break for two weeks. But since the Supreme Court recently scheduled arguments in the case challenging the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act, it seemed like a… Read More »KHN’s ‘What the Health?’ Replay: What’s at Stake When High Court Hears ACA Case
Before the prime-time GOP showcase began, President Donald Trump took to the podium Monday afternoon and delivered an approximately one-hour campaign-style speech to delegates after he was officially renominated by the Republican Party as its candidate for president. His comments were wide-ranging, and our partners… Read More »Republican Convention, Day 1: A Campaign-Style Trump Speech and More
In late August 2019, Shannon Harness awoke to serious pain in the lower right side of his abdomen — a telltale sign of appendicitis. He booked it to the emergency room of the only hospital in the county: Heart of the Rockies Regional Medical Center… Read More »Veteran’s Appendectomy Launches Excruciating Months-Long Battle Over Bill
In a near-empty arena on the river in his hometown of Wilmington, Delaware, former Vice President Joe Biden accepted the Democratic nomination for president, promising hope over fear, fairness over privilege, love over hate. And, he said, “Facts over fiction.” Let’s see about that. Our… Read More »Democratic Convention, Night 4: ‘Facts Over Fiction’ in Biden’s Speech
Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. Democrats have shown a remarkably united front, including on health care, in their socially distant, made-for-TV convention this week. That’s likely due, at least in part, to the physical separation of party members who disagree… Read More »KHN’s ‘What The Health?’: Democrats in Array (For Now)
The Cleveland Clinic struck a partnership with CVS Health subsidiary Aetna to form a new accountable care organization (ACO). The two companies plan to launch a co-branded insurance plan this fall.
An attack ad, which was released in mid-July, states that Montana Gov. Steve Bullock, a Democratic candidate for the Senate, supports a government-run health care program that would wreak havoc on the state’s health care infrastructure. “Bullock’s health care plan will force rural hospitals to… Read More »GOP Senate Ad Misrepresents Mont. Governor’s Stance on Rural Hospitals, Public Option
Pennsylvania is rolling out its new “Pennie” this fall: a state-run insurance exchange that officials say will save residents collectively millions of dollars on next year’s health plan premiums. Since the Affordable Care Act’s marketplaces opened for enrollment in fall 2013, Pennsylvania, like most states,… Read More »‘Pennie’-Pinching States Take Over Obamacare Exchanges From Feds
During the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, all of the seven largest commercial insurers saw their profits rise, with some seeing their profits double. Will they have to pay some of it back?
For Dr. Gabe Charbonneau, a primary care doctor in Stevensville, Montana, the coronavirus pandemic is an existential threat. Charbonneau, 43, his two partners and 10 staff members are struggling to keep their rural practice alive. Patient volume is slowly returning to pre-COVID levels. But the… Read More »Primary Care Doctors Look at Payment Overhaul After Pandemic Disruption
For the quarter ending on June 30, when many health systems face a rising number of Covid-19 cases, the Kaiser Foundation Health Plan more than doubled its net income to $4.5 billion. The nonprofit managed care plans attributed the increase to reduced operating expenses and… Read More »Kaiser sees Q2 net income more than double to $4.5B
Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen. When you need medical care, it can be a lot like entering a casino — playing for your financial life with the deck stacked against you. But in this episode, reporter Celia Llopis-Jepsen offers insight and tips… Read More »‘An Arm and a Leg’: Financial Self-Defense School Is Now in Session
A recently unsealed whistleblower case filed by the Department of Justice accuses Cigna of fraudulently overbilling for its Medicare Advantage plans. Allegations claim the company submitted unsupported diagnoses that resulted in “billions” in overpayments.
Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. President Donald Trump keeps promising to unveil a comprehensive plan to replace the Affordable Care Act, but it keeps not appearing. However, this week he did order an expansion of telehealth for Medicare beneficiaries and… Read More »KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Still Waiting for That Trump Health Plan
Despite strong opposition from Republicans and rural voters, Missouri on Tuesday joined 37 states and the District of Columbia in expanding its Medicaid program. Voters in Missouri approved creating a state constitutional amendment that will open Medicaid eligibility to include healthy adults starting July 1,… Read More »Missouri Voters Approve Medicaid Expansion Despite GOP Resistance
Premiums for health plans sold through Covered California, the state’s Affordable Care Act insurance exchange, will rise an average of 0.6% next year — the smallest hike since the exchange started providing coverage in 2014, the agency announced Tuesday. The modest increase follows an average… Read More »Covered California Announces Record-Low Rate Hike for 2021
Insurance startup Oscar Health plans to expand to 19 new markets next year, pending regulatory approval. The company will offer individual and family health plans in four new states, and will expand its presence in existing states.
When COVID-19 smacked the United States in March and April, health plans feared medical costs could skyrocket, jacking up premiums drastically in 2021, when millions of the newly unemployed might still be out of work. But something else happened: Non-COVID care collapsed as hospitals emptied… Read More »Don’t Count on Lower Premiums Despite Pandemic-Driven Boon for Insurers
ST. LOUIS — Haley Organ thought she had everything figured out. After graduating from a small private college just outside Boston, she earned her master’s degree, entered the workforce and eventually landed a corporate job here as a data analyst. Life seemed to be going… Read More »Missourians to Vote on Medicaid Expansion as Crisis Leaves Millions Without Insurance
When Will Lightbourne looked at the statistics behind California’s coronavirus cases, the disparities were “blindingly clear”: Blacks and Latinos are dying at higher rates than most other Californians. As of Monday, Latinos account for 45.6% of coronavirus deaths in a state where they make up… Read More »Medi-Cal Agency’s New Head Wants to Tackle Disparities and Racism
Reversing a three-year decline, the number of people covered by Medicaid nationwide rose markedly this spring as the impact of the recession caused by the outbreak of COVID-19 began to take hold. Yet, the growth in participation in the state-federal health insurance program for low-income… Read More »The COVID-19 Downturn Triggers Jump in Medicaid Enrollment
NEW YORK — As the coronavirus spread silently through New York City early this year, Deborah Koeppel had an appointment with her cardiologist and two visits with her primary care doctor. Both physicians are members of Concorde Medical Group, a practice in Manhattan with an… Read More »Last Thing Patients Need During Pandemic: Being Last to Know a Doctor Left Network
President Donald Trump came into office vowing to repeal and replace Obamacare. While he successfully neutralized the health care law’s requirement that everyone carry insurance, the law remains in effect. When Fox News host Chris Wallace noted that Trump has yet to put forward a replacement… Read More »With DACA Ruling, Did Supreme Court Grant Trump New Powers To Reshape Health Care?
Humana will send 1 million screening kits to its members for managing diabetes and screening for colorectal cancer. The at-home tests are intended to offset screenings and other preventive care being pushed back due to Covid-19.
The predictions were dire: Coronavirus lockdowns would put millions of Americans out of work, stripping them of their health insurance and pushing them into Medicaid, the health insurance program for low-income people. In California, Gov. Gavin Newsom’s administration projected that the pandemic would force about… Read More »Medicaid Mystery: Millions of Enrollees Haven’t Materialized in California
Everyone involved even tangentially in health care today is completely consumed by the coronavirus pandemic, as they should be. But the pandemic is accelerating a problem that used to be front and center in health circles: the impending insolvency of Medicare. With record numbers of… Read More »Another Problem on the Health Horizon: Medicare Is Running Out of Money
Clover Health said it plans to triple its footprint in the next year, pending CMS approval. But the insurer has also posted a net loss in recent years.
Kaia Health, a startup making an app to help users manage back pain, touted the results of a large, randomized controlled trial using its app. The company currently markets its system to employers, but hopes to make it available as a covered benefit in the… Read More »Digital health startup Kaia hopes to win over insurers with results of back pain study
Molina will acquire Passport Health Plan’s Medicaid and dual-eligible business for $20 million. The Kentucky-based company is a long-standing provider of Medicaid managed care plans, but lost a bid with the state earlier this year.
People who’ve been laid off or furloughed from their jobs now have significantly more time to decide whether to hang on to their employer-sponsored health insurance, according to a recent federal rule. Under the federal law known as COBRA, people who lose their job-based coverage… Read More »Administration Eases Rules to Give Laid-Off Workers More Time to Sign Up for COBRA
In advance of an upcoming road trip with her elderly parents, Wendy Epstein’s physician agreed it would be “prudent” for her and her kids to get tested for COVID-19. Seeing the tests as a “medical need,” the doctor said insurance would likely pay for them,… Read More »For COVID Tests, the Question of Who Pays Comes Down to Interpretation
The Friday Breeze Want to read the best and most provocative stories from the week? Welcome to the Friday Breeze, where we compile them all — so you’re set with your weekend reading. While you, loyal reader, wait for a wonderful new permanent Friday Breeze… Read More »Must-Reads of the Week
GoHealth, an online insurance broker focusing on Medicare Advantage plans, went public on Wednesday for $914 million. The company will trade on Nasdaq under the ticker “GOCO.”
Researchers at the Urban Institute found that up to 10 million people could lose their job-based insurance due to Covid-19 by the end of the year.
“First off, it’s in statute already in HIPAA that preexisting conditions are covered.” Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, on July 9, speaking at a virtual summit sponsored by The Hill newspaper One of the most popular features of the Affordable Care Act is… Read More »Azar Says Federal Law Had Preexisting Conditions Covered Before ACA. Not So Much.