Podcast: KHN’s ‘What The Health?’ ACA Under Fire. Again.

Democrats within the Senate are gearing as much as combat President Donald Trump’s nominee to the Supreme Court, U.S. Circuit Judge Brett Kavanaugh. They argue he’s not solely a possible risk to abortion rights, but in addition to the Affordable Care Act.

Meanwhile, the Trump administration continues its efforts to undermine the workings of the Affordable Care Act. This week, officers introduced a freeze on funds to insurers who enroll massive numbers of sicker sufferers, and one other lower to the funds for “navigators” who assist individuals perceive their insurance coverage choices and enroll for protection.

This week’s panelists for KHN’s “What the Health?” are:

Julie Rovner of Kaiser Health News

Margot Sanger-Katz of The New York Times

Anna Edney of Bloomberg News

Julie Appleby of Kaiser Health News

Among the takeaways from this week’s podcast:

One motive Democrats are rallying across the well being subject reasonably than the abortion subject is that there’s extra unity of their caucus over well being than abortion. Also, the 2 key Republican senators who help abortion rights — Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) — additionally voted in opposition to GOP efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act final 12 months. The Trump administration’s motion on risk-adjustment funds despatched one more sign to insurers that the federal authorities doesn’t essentially have their backs and is prepared to vary the foundations alongside the best way. The Trump administration says it needs to chop to funds for navigators as a result of they don’t seem to be cost-effective. But the navigator cash doesn’t come from taxpayers or authorities sources. It is paid from insurance coverage business consumer charges. These funds additionally go to help ACA promoting — which has additionally been lower. However, the consumer charges haven’t been lowered. In principle, decreasing these charges may present financial savings that might be handed on to shoppers. After being known as out on Twitter by Trump, drugmaker Pfizer this week introduced it will delay some already-announced value will increase on about 100 of its medication. It is value noting that the president used his bully pulpit and gained some success. The six-month delay will imply that buyers won’t expertise a rise in value on the pharmacy for no less than that point interval. But it nonetheless raises questions. The Trump administration labored to dam a World Health Organization decision to advertise breastfeeding. But whereas this appeared a transparent case of selling the pursuits of toddler system corporations over public well being specialists, there was pushback from some ladies who say they’re unable to breastfeed and really feel stigma once they go for system as a substitute. On the opposite hand, system will be harmful in creating international locations with out easy accessibility to wash water.

Plus, for “extra credit,” the panelists advocate their favourite well being tales of the week they suppose it is best to learn, too:

Julie Rovner: Politico Agenda’s “The One Big Winner of the Obamacare Wars,” by Joanne Kenen

Julie Appleby: The New York Times’ “Doctor, Your Patient Is Waiting. It’s a Red Panda,” by Karen Weintraub.

Anna Edney: Politico’s “CMS Quit Test of Pricey Cancer Treatment Amid Concerns Over Industry Role,” by Sarah Karlin-Smith and David Pittman

Margot Sanger-Katz: HuffPost’s “Trump Administration May Be Preparing A New Obamacare Sabotage Effort,” by Jonathan Cohn

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