KHN’s ‘What The Health?’: Remaking Medicaid — Maybe

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The Trump administration is making an attempt to realize a objective for Republicans that dates to the 1980s — permitting states to acquire a minimum of a few of their funding for Medicaid as a block grant. The trade-off for states is that, whereas doubtlessly getting much less cash from Washington, D.C., they’d be freed from some federal guidelines and necessities for this system. Advocates for sufferers warn it might imply much less take care of fewer folks.

Meanwhile, because the novel coronavirus continues to unfold from China, public well being officers are usually not the one ones working frantically. The worry ensuing from the ailment is beginning to have ripple results on the world financial system, commerce and transportation.

And, in reproductive well being information, the Trump administration is difficult California over its regulation requiring most insurance coverage to cowl abortion providers. The administration mentioned that violates federal regulation and warned that if California doesn’t change the regulation, it might lose its federal well being and training funding.

This week’s panelists are Julie Rovner from Kaiser Health News, Kimberly Leonard of the Washington Examiner, Erin Mershon of Stat and Joanne Kenen of Politico.

Among the takeaways from this week’s podcast:

The Trump administration’s determination to encourage states to maneuver to Medicaid block grants is more likely to be challenged in courtroom, but it surely’s not clear if critics have to attend for a state to implement such a plan earlier than they will search a judicial assessment. One merchandise within the administration’s announcement on Medicaid that’s more likely to win assist amongst each liberal and conservative native officers can be the power of state packages to restrict their prescription drug formularies. Even some progressive states, similar to Massachusetts, have known as for that flexibility, though they don’t seem to be more likely to wish to transfer to a block grant. As the brand new coronavirus outbreak in China makes headlines within the U.S., it’s vital to notice that scientists nonetheless have many issues to be taught in regards to the virus, together with how harmful it’s. China doesn’t appear to be monitoring or counting the variety of delicate circumstances of an infection, so it’s troublesome to find out how deadly the virus is. The effort by China to quarantine areas hit by the coronavirus and different international locations’ journey and commerce restrictions are onerous to implement — they usually might create difficulties in preventing the unfold of illness if contaminated folks subvert the bounds on motion with out officers realizing what’s taking place. The Supreme Court this week gave a brief inexperienced gentle to the Trump administration’s rule to think about whether or not immigrants looking for residency within the U.S. have used public help packages, similar to Medicaid or meals stamps. But that’s not the courtroom’s remaining phrase on what’s referred to as the “public charge” rule. It is merely permitting this system to go ahead whereas it’s evaluated by decrease courts. As anti-abortion supporters rallied in Washington final week, the administration introduced its plan to chop funds to California over the abortion situation. Federal officers are anticipated to inform a half-dozen different states with related guidelines for insurers that they may face the identical penalties.

Plus, for further credit score, the panelists advocate their favourite well being coverage tales of the week they assume you must learn too:

Julie Rovner: Kaiser Health News’ “A Guide To Following The Health Debate In The 2020 Elections,” by Julie Rovner

Joanne Kenen: ProPublica and Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting’s “How These Jail Officials Profit From Selling E-Cigarettes to Inmates,” by R.G. Dunlop

Kimberly Leonard: BillyPenn’s “When Philly Paramedics Arrive, Many Overdose Victims Have Vanished,” by Max Marin

Erin Mershon: Stat’s “It’s the Insulin, Stupid: How Drug Pricing’s Simplest Case Study Became a Top Issue for 2020 Democrats,” by Lev Facher

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