Kaiser Health News  |  Nonprofit News Organization

Kaiser Health News (KHN) is a nonprofit news organization committed to in-depth coverage of health care policy and politics.

August 28, 2019

To Help Prevent Suicide, Utah Counselors Approach Gun Owners Differently

Utah has one of the highest rates of suicide in the U.S. And from 2006 to 2015, 85% of firearm deaths in the state were suicides.
August 26, 2019

Why Red Wyoming Wants to Regulate Air Ambulance Costs

The issue has come to a head in Wyoming, where rugged terrain and long distances between hospitals forces reliance on these ambulance flights.
August 6, 2019

Trump Wants to Take Guns Away From People in Crisis. Will That Stop Shootings?

A flurry of states have recently passed such laws — known as extreme risk protection orders — which allow a court to intervene when someone shows warning signs of impending violence.
August 1, 2019

‘Open For Business’: Trump Administration Allows States to Import Drugs From Canada

The plan relies on states to come up with proposals for safe importation and submit them for federal approval.
July 9, 2019

Today in Court: An Obamacare Case That Could Upend the U.S. Health System

The fate of the Affordable Care Act is again on the line Tuesday, as a federal appeals court in New Orleans takes up a case in which a lower court judge has already ruled the massive health law unconstitutional.
July 9, 2019

Fewer Immigrant Children Are Using California's Health Insurance. Is Fear to Blame?

As California prepares to expand Medicaid coverage to young adults living in the state illegally, the number of undocumented immigrant children in the program is slowly declining, new state data show.
July 8, 2019

Maine Expands Abortion Access in 2 Ways

While abortion bans in Republican-led states dominated headlines in recent weeks, a handful of other states have expanded abortion access. Maine joined those ranks in June with two new laws ― one requires all insurance and Medicaid to cover the procedure and the other allows physician assistants and nurses with advanced training to perform it.
June 18, 2019

In Fight Against Surprise Medical Bills, Lawmakers Miss High Air Ambulance Costs

In 2017, GAO found that the median price charged nationally by air ambulance providers was around $36,400 for helicopter rides and even higher for other aircraft.
June 4, 2019

To Fund Health Insurance Subsidies, California Governor Proposes Penalty for Uninsured

If Newsom’s $295 million plan is enacted, California would be the first state to offer financial aid to middle-class families who have shouldered the full cost of premiums themselves, often well over $1,000 a month.
May 29, 2019

Missouri Has 1 Abortion Clinic Left. It May Stop Offering the Procedure This Week.

Five other states — Kentucky, Mississippi, North Dakota, South Dakota and West Virginia — reportedly have only one abortion clinic.
May 20, 2019

The Last Holdout: Missouri's Struggle to Adopt a Statewide Prescription Monitoring Program

Missouri retained its lonely title as the only state without a statewide prescription drug monitoring program — for the seventh year in a row — after the legislative session ended Friday.
May 14, 2019

No Mercy: How a Kansas Town Is Grappling With Its Hospital's Closure

For the 7,800 people of Fort Scott, about 90 miles south of Kansas City, the hospital’s closure was a loss they never imagined possible, sparking anger and fear.
May 8, 2019

California's Governor Wants to Cover Immigrants' Health Care. How Would He Pay for It?

Public health officials describe the proposed reallocation of state dollars as a well-meaning initiative that nonetheless would have “dire consequences” to core public health services.
April 29, 2019

How Might a Public Hospital's Ties to a Catholic Health Facility Affect Treatment?

For opponents of the plan, the issue boils down to a clear-cut principle: How can a public hospital that has been a leader in women’s health care and medical services for the gay and transgender community partner with a private system that not only denies such services but also casts them as immoral?
April 26, 2019

Despite Legal Challenge, Association Health Insurance Plans Push On

Nationally, an estimated 30,000 people are in such association health plans, a type of health insurance seeing a nascent resurgence following an initial drop-off after the ACA took effect in 2014.
April 25, 2019

In 10 Years, Half of Middle-Income Elders Won’t Be Able to Afford Housing or Medical Care

Middle-income seniors are a group that Beth Burnham Mace, one of the study’s authors, said has been often overlooked when policymakers and legislators think about housing and care for aging Americans.
April 25, 2019

As States Weigh Banning Popular Pesticide, EPA Fights to Keep It on the Market

Hawaii was the first state to pass a full ban last year. Now California, Oregon, New York and Connecticut are trying to do the same.
April 17, 2019

Study: Workplace Wellness Programs Have Little Effect on Health or Costs

Workplace wellness programs have become an $8 billion industry in the U.S. But a study published Tuesday in JAMA found they don’t cut costs for employers, reduce absenteeism or improve workers’ health.
April 10, 2019

Vaccine Exemptions Surge as Parents and Doctors Evade Requirements

Doctors in California have broad authority to grant medical exemptions to vaccination, and to decide the grounds for doing so.
April 1, 2019

After Missouri Medicaid Kids Shifted to Managed Care, Suicide Risk Grew

The group acknowledged that factors other than the move to managed care could have played a role behind the increase, including social media, cyberbullying and lack of access to specialized mental health care.
March 28, 2019

Federal Judge Blocks Medicaid Work Requirements -- Again

For a second time in nine months, the same federal judge has struck down the Trump administration’s plan to force some Medicaid recipients to work to maintain benefits.
March 28, 2019

As Medicaid Expansion Boosts Hospital Bottom Lines, Costs Also Rise

While hospitals are financially better off since the expansion, they have increased the costs they shift to commercial health plans since 2009, the state researchers said.
March 26, 2019

To Help Mental Health Patients, Hospitals Open a New Kind of ER

In pockets across the country, hospitals are trying something new to address the unique needs of psychiatric patients: opening emergency units specifically designed to help stabilize and treat patients and connect them to longer-term resources and care.
March 21, 2019

How Some States Are Using Medicare to Control Employee Health Costs

The strategy: Use Medicare reimbursement rates to recalibrate how they pay hospitals. If the gamble pays off, more private-sector employers could start doing the same thing.
March 12, 2019

‘Medieval’ Diseases Flare as Unsanitary Living Conditions Worsen in Some States

Infectious diseases — some that ravaged populations in the Middle Ages — are resurging in California and around the country, and are hitting homeless populations especially hard.
March 7, 2019

Despite FDA Warning, Cities and Counties Will Likely Keep Importing Drugs

Cities and local governments in several states said they will continue to use a Canadian company to offer employees prescription drugs at a highly reduced price, even though federal officials raised safety concerns about the practice last week.
March 7, 2019

Mumps Quarantine at Detention Center Restricts Immigrants' Legal Access

The outbreak has also raised questions about how officials dealing with public health concerns can undermine detainees’ legal rights.
February 22, 2019

Final Abortion Rule That Would Defund Planned Parenthood Released by Trump Administration

The Trump administration Friday finalized a regulation intended to push Planned Parenthood out of the Title X federal family planning program, keeping a campaign promise to anti-abortion groups.
February 22, 2019

More and More Doctors Must Offer Overdose Reversal Drug Along With Opioids

New state laws and regulations in California, Virginia, Arizona, Ohio, Washington, Vermont and Rhode Island require physicians to “co-prescribe” or at least offer naloxone prescriptions when prescribing opioids to patients considered at high risk of overdosing.
February 21, 2019

Trump's Plan to Beat HIV Hits a Rough Road in Rural America

Strategies that work in liberal cities like Seattle won’t necessarily work in rural areas of Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma and South Carolina.
February 12, 2019

Vaccine Storage Compromises Effectiveness

The federal government sets standards on the storage of vaccines. However, not all health care providers are accountable under those guidelines.
February 8, 2019

Medicaid Enrollee Drop in Missouri and Tennessee Raises Flag on Vetting Process

Medicaid enrollment nationally was down about 1.5 percent from January to October last year, the latest enrollment data available from the federal government’s Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).
February 6, 2019

Amid E-Scooter Safety Concerns, Austin Asks CDC to Investigate Injuries

Austin’s first scooter-related death occurred over the weekend. Police identified the scooter rider as Mark Sands, a 21-year-old UT student from Ireland, who died Saturday, just one day after suffering critical injuries when the electric scooter he was riding collided with a car.
January 23, 2019

Doctors Call California’s Probe of Opioid Deaths a ‘Witch Hunt’

The effort, dubbed “the Death Certificate Project,” has sparked a conflict with physicians in California and beyond, in part because the doctors being investigated did not necessarily write the prescriptions leading to a death.
January 9, 2019

Medicaid Plans Cover Doctors’ Visits, Hospital Care — and Now a GED

Medicaid health plans are starting to pay for non-traditional services such as meals, transportation, housing and other forms of assistance to improve members’ health and reduce medical costs.
January 4, 2019

California Joins the Majority and Mandates Breathalyzers for DUI Offenders

On Jan. 1, California joined the majority of states that have laws requiring drivers with drunken-driving convictions to install breathalyzers in vehicles they own or operate.
December 17, 2018

Obamacare Is Ruled Unconstitutional by a Federal Judge -- What Now?

Judge Reed C. O’Connor struck down the law, siding with a group of 18 Republican state attorneys general and two GOP governors who brought the case. O’Connor said the tax bill passed by Congress last December effectively rendered the entire health law unconstitutional.
December 11, 2018

Nursing Homes Balk at California Requiring More Direct Care of Patients

More than half of California’s nursing homes are asking to be exempted from new state regulations that would require them to spend more time directly caring for their patients.
November 30, 2018

Plans Violating Obamacare Could Now Be Eligible for Federal Subsidies

The Trump administration wants states to innovate in ways that could produce more lower-cost options, even if those alternatives do not provide the same level of financial or medical coverage as an ACA plan.
November 29, 2018

Under Trump, Number of Uninsured Kids Rose for First Time This Decade

After years of steady decline, the number of U.S. children without health insurance rose by 276,000 in 2017, according to a Georgetown University report released Thursday.
November 20, 2018

Trump's Health Plans Can Be Extended to 3 Years. Will Some Abandon Obamacare?

With new federal rules allowing short-term plans that last up to three years, agents said, some consumers are opting for these more risky policies. Adding to the appeal is the elimination of a federal tax penalty for those without comprehensive insurance, effective next year.
November 13, 2018

With Hospitalization Losing Favor, States Allow Outpatient Mental Health Treatment

Today, 47 states and the District of Columbia have laws allowing localities to set up assisted outpatient treatment, according to the Treatment Advocacy Center, a nonprofit group that strongly supports assisted outpatient treatment.
October 23, 2018

CMS Makes It Easier for States to Opt Out of Obamacare Requirements

States would be able to use federal funding to provide subsidies to people buying short-term health insurance policies, which typically don’t provide comprehensive coverage, under guidance released Monday by the Trump administration.
October 19, 2018

Private Medicaid Plans Receive Billions in Tax Dollars, With Little Oversight

The current political debate over Medicaid centers on putting patients to work so they can earn their government benefits. Yet some experts say the country would be better served by asking this question instead: Are insurance companies — now receiving hundreds of billions in public money — earning their Medicaid checks?
October 17, 2018

States Move to Safeguard Cancer Patients’ Chances of Having Children

The state measures don’t apply to companies that are self-funded, meaning they pay their employee claims directly rather than buying state-regulated insurance policies for that purpose. They also don’t apply to government-funded programs such as Medicaid or the military’s Tricare program.
October 3, 2018

As Medicaid Expands, Court-Ordered Drug Rehab Loses Steam

Court-ordered rehab is increasingly falling out of fashion in California as Santa Cruz and 18 other counties begin to treat addiction like any other health condition — with the Medicaid program relying on evidence-based practices and trained personnel to make decisions on care.
September 26, 2018

New Mental Health Disclosure Requirement for Florida Students Concerns Parents

On registration forms for new students, the state’s school districts now must ask whether a child has ever been referred for mental health services.
September 18, 2018

Decades-Old Technology Plagues California Medicaid Program

In the shadow of Silicon Valley, the hub of the world’s digital revolution, California officials still submit their records to the feds justifying billions in Medicaid spending the old-fashioned way: on paper.
September 13, 2018

As Hurricane Nears, Officials Scramble to Protect Seniors From Florence

Perhaps no other population is as vulnerable during a hurricane as frail, older adults, especially those who are homebound or living in nursing homes.
September 7, 2018

Opioid Tax Proponents Pin Hopes on November Elections

Lawmakers in at least 10 other states intend to consider opioid taxes in upcoming legislative sessions. Many pin their hopes on the November midterm elections.
September 5, 2018

Rudy Giuliani’s Consulting Firm Helped Halt a Florida Opioid Investigation

Six months after hiring former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani’s consulting firm, Purdue Pharma settled a Florida state investigation that had threatened to expose early illegal marketing of its blockbuster drug OxyContin, company and state records show.
September 4, 2018

Feeling the Burn: Wildfires Bring More Health Challenges for Low-Income Californians

People like Viviana and her family are hit disproportionately when wildfires ignite — because smoke adds another layer of toxic substances to the already dirty air, experts say.
August 31, 2018

The Pros and Cons of Allowing Medical Marijuana Use in Schools

Of the 31 states and Washington, D.C., that have legalized medical marijuana, at least seven have enacted laws or regulations that allow students to use it on school grounds, in part because doing so could risk their federal funding.
August 24, 2018

Medicaid Covers Foster Kids, But Health Needs Still Slip Through Cracks

Foster parents say that even with the coverage they struggle to meet the extraordinary health needs of their children. Part of the trouble is too few doctors accept Medicaid, most notably mental health specialists.
August 23, 2018

Rehabilitation Plus Rehab? Jails Treat Inmates With Opioid Addiction Medication

Nearly 1 in 5 jail and prison inmates regularly used heroin or opioids before being incarcerated, making jails a logical entry point for intervention, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.
August 14, 2018

Feds Encourage Cheaper Health Plans Off Obamacare Exchanges

CMS is encouraging states to allow the sale of plans outside of those exchanges that don’t incorporate a surcharge insurers started tacking on last year.
August 9, 2018

States Get Obamacare Help From an Unlikely Source: the Trump Administration

When Tracy Deis decided in 2016 to transition from a full-time job to part-time contract work, the loss of her employer’s health insurance was not a major worry because she knew she could get coverage through the marketplace set up by the Affordable Care Act.
August 6, 2018

Medicaid Cuts Burden a Vulnerable Puerto Rico Post-Storm

Despite the residual effects from last year’s devastating hurricanes, Puerto Rico is moving ahead with major cuts to its health care safety net that will affect more than a million of its poorest residents.
August 1, 2018

Trump Administration Loosens Restrictions on Skimpy, Short-Term Health Plans

Insurers will again be able to sell short-term health insurance good for up to 12 months under final rules released Wednesday by the Trump administration.
July 27, 2018

Top Trump Official Dims Hopes for Single-Payer Health Care

Stepping into the land of the Trump resistance, Seema Verma flatly rejected California’s pursuit of single-payer health care as unworkable and dismissed the Affordable Care Act as too flawed to ever succeed.
July 19, 2018

Obamacare Conundrum: If the States Suing to Overturn It Win, Their Residents Will Suffer Most

If the Affordable Care Act’s protections for people with preexisting medical conditions are struck down in court, residents of the Republican-led states that are challenging the law have the most to lose.
July 13, 2018

Medicaid Fraud Is Flying Under Insurers' Radar

Despite receiving billions of dollars in taxpayer money, Medicaid insurers are lax in ferreting out fraud and neglect to tell states about unscrupulous medical providers, according to a federal report released Thursday.
July 10, 2018

If Roe v. Wade Is Reversed, 22 States Poised to Ban Abortion

What would the U.S. look like without Roe v. Wade, the 1973 case that legalized abortion nationwide?
July 9, 2018

There's a Cure for Deadly Hepatitis C, But 144,000 State Prisoners Aren't Getting It

State prisons across the U.S. are failing to treat at least 144,000 inmates who have hepatitis C, a curable but potentially fatal liver disease, according to a recent survey and subsequent interviews of state corrections departments.
July 6, 2018

What a U.S.-China Trade War Could Mean for the Opioid Epidemic

The American struggle to curb opioid addiction could become collateral damage in President Donald Trump’s showdown on trade.
July 6, 2018

The Other Victims: First Responders Often Suffer in Solitude

The day a gunman fired into a crowd of 22,000 people at the country music festival in Las Vegas, hospital nursing supervisor Antoinette Mullan was focused on one thing: saving lives.
July 2, 2018

Medicaid Work Requirements Lose First Court Test

A federal judge Friday struck down a Trump administration decision allowing states to force low-income adults to work to qualify for Medicaid.
June 15, 2018

Medicaid Work Requirements Get Their Day in Court. Here's 5 Things to Know About Them.

The Trump administration’s decision in January to give states the power to impose work requirements on Medicaid enrollees faces a federal court hearing Friday.
June 7, 2018

Feds, For Now, Won't Block States From Circumventing Trump's Obamacare Cuts

Federal officials will not block insurance companies from again using a workaround to cushion a steep rise in health premiums caused by President Donald Trump’s cancellation of a program established under the Affordable Care Act, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar announced Wednesday.
June 6, 2018

Trump Administration Releases Medicaid Scorecard

The Trump administration Monday released a Medicaid “scorecard” intended to show how the nation’s largest health program is performing. But the nation’s top Medicaid official didn’t want to draw any conclusions.
May 21, 2018

Is the Overdose-Reversal Drug Hard to Get? Depends on Where You Live.

A few months ago, Kourtnaye Sturgeon helped save someone’s life. She was driving in downtown Indianapolis when she saw people gathered around a car on the side of the road. Sturgeon pulled over, and a man told her there was nothing she could do: Two men had overdosed on opioids and appeared to be dead.
May 18, 2018

Deportation or Death? The Difficult Health Care Choices Facing Undocumented Immigrants

“Dear the most highly respected judge and court, I’m writing this because I love my mom. My mom is very important to me. I have no idea what to do without her. Even though my mom’s afraid, she’s not giving up.”
May 17, 2018

STD Epidemic, Responsible for Babies' Deaths, Reaches Record Level in California

Diagnoses of sexually transmitted diseases hit a record high in California last year — with sometimes deadly consequences, according to preliminary state data released this week.
May 10, 2018

Use of Psychiatric Drugs Way Up in California Jails

The number of jail inmates in California taking psychotropic drugs has jumped about 25 percent in five years, and they now account for about a fifth of the county jail population across the state, according to a new analysis of state data.
May 7, 2018

Community Seeks Solutions for This Texas County's Alarming Suicide Rate

Smith County, which encompasses Tyler and is home to more than 225,000 residents, has the highest suicide rate among the state’s 25 most populous counties.
March 30, 2018

Thousands Mistakenly Enrolled in Medicaid During Expansion

California signed up an estimated 450,000 people under Medicaid expansion who may not have been eligible for coverage, according to a report by the U.S. Health and Human Services’ chief watchdog.
March 20, 2018

Paying Hospitals to Keep People Out of Them? It Works in Maryland.

Saturdays at Mercy Medical Center used to be perversely lucrative. The dialysis clinic across the street was closed on weekends.
March 12, 2018

4 Takeaways From Trump Administration's Decision to Uphold Obamacare

That’s what federal officials told Idaho regulators and the state’s governor late Thursday regarding the state’s plan to allow insurers to sell health plans that fall short of the Affordable Care Act’s requirements.
March 9, 2018

How Medicaid Became a Go-to Funding Source for Schools

OAKLAND, Calif. — Gerardo Alejandrez used to punch classmates, throw chairs and curse at his teachers, conduct that forced him to switch from school to school. “I had a lot of anger issues,” the 16-year-old said recently.
March 6, 2018

Feds Issue Split Decision on Arkansas Medicaid Waiver

The Trump administration on Monday approved Arkansas’ request for a Medicaid work requirement but deferred a decision on the state’s request to roll back its Medicaid expansion that has added 300,000 adults to the program.
March 2, 2018

When Medicaid Charges Premiums, Thousands Fall Behind

When Arkansas lawmakers debated in 2016 whether to renew the state’s Medicaid expansion, many Republican lawmakers were swayed only if some of the 300,000 adults who gained coverage would have to start paying premiums.
February 26, 2018

All Those Medicaid Experiments? States Often Fail to Evaluate the Results.

With federal spending on Medicaid experiments soaring in recent years, a congressional watchdog said state and federal governments fail to adequately evaluate if the efforts improve care and save money.
February 16, 2018

States Pressure Feds to Let Them Import Prescription Drugs From Canada

Norm Thurston is a “free-market guy” — a conservative health economist in Republican-run Utah who rarely sees the government’s involvement in anything as beneficial.
February 15, 2018

Despite Legal Uncertainty, Blue Cross Takes Idaho's Offer to Skirt Obamacare

It’s barely been two weeks since Idaho regulators said they would allow the sale of health insurance that does not meet all of the Affordable Care Act’s requirements — a controversial step some experts said would likely draw legal scrutiny and, potentially, federal fines for any insurer that jumped in.
February 14, 2018

Why Free Vasectomy Coverage Could Cost Some Maryland Men

It was a well-intentioned effort to provide men with some of the same financial protection from birth control costs that women get. But a new Maryland law may jeopardize the ability of thousands of consumers — both men and women — to use health savings accounts.
February 13, 2018

As Aetna Goes on Trial, California Announces a New Investigation

Both of California’s health insurance regulators said they will investigate how Aetna Inc. makes coverage decisions, as the lawsuit of a California man who is suing the nation’s third-largest insurer for improper denial of care heads for opening arguments on Wednesday.
February 13, 2018

Veteran? Terminally Ill? Want Death With Dignity? That Could Get You Evicted.

California voters passed a law two years ago that allows terminally ill people to take lethal drugs to end their lives, but controversy is growing over a newer rule that effectively bans that option in the state’s eight veterans’ homes.
February 9, 2018

Trump's Subsidies Cut Threatens Basic Health Programs in 2 States

Comprehensive coverage for more than 800,000 low-income people in New York and Minnesota who pay a fraction of the typical cost of a marketplace plan may be in jeopardy after the federal government partially cut funding this year.
February 8, 2018

Overall Obamacare Enrollment Down But Up in States That Run Their Own Marketplace

After much drama leading to this year’s open enrollment for Affordable Care Act coverage — a shorter time frame, a sharply reduced federal budget for marketing and assistance, and confusion resulting from months of repeal-and-replace debate — the final tally paints a mixed picture.
February 6, 2018

With Fentanyl on the Streets, California Pays Opioid Users to Test Their Drugs

Michael Marquesen first noticed about a year ago that fentanyl, a dangerous synthetic opioid, had hit the streets of Los Angeles. People suddenly started overdosing after they shot up a new white powder that dealers promised would give them a powerful high.
February 5, 2018

Trump Administration Approves Indiana's Medicaid Plan

Indiana on Friday became the second state to win federal approval to add a work requirement for adult Medicaid recipients who gained coverage under the Affordable Care Act, but a less debated “lockout” provision in its new plan could lead to tens of thousands of enrollees losing coverage.
February 2, 2018

25,000 Medicaid Patients in Indiana Have Lost Coverage for Failing to Pay Premiums

As the Trump administration moves to give states more flexibility in running Medicaid, advocates for the poor are keeping a close eye on Indiana to see whether such conservative ideas improve or harm care.
February 1, 2018

As States Target High Drug Prices, Pharma Targets State Lawmakers

It was expected to be a perfunctory statehouse meeting — three lobbyists and a legislator discussing a proposal to educate Louisiana doctors about the price of drugs they prescribe.
January 30, 2018

Medicaid Transportation At Risk in Some States

For more than 50 years, the program for the poor and sick has been required to ferry certain clients to and from medical appointments. But a few states have sought — and received — waivers to that rule.
January 30, 2018

Idaho Is Allowing Insurers to Ignore Some Obamacare Rules. Can It Do that?

Idaho is saying it will allow insurers to ignore some ACA rules on plans not sold on the marketplace, aiming to make these state-based plans less costly.
January 17, 2018

Trump’s Work-for-Medicaid Rule Puts Work on States’ Shoulders

The Trump administration’s watershed decision Thursday to allow states to test a work requirement for adult Medicaid enrollees sparked widespread criticism from doctors, advocates for the poor, and minority and disability rights groups.
January 11, 2018

It's Official: Trump Administration to Start Letting States Add Work Requirements to Medicaid

The Trump administration early Thursday initiated a pivotal change in the Medicaid program, announcing that for the first time the federal government will allow states to test work requirements as a condition for coverage.
January 8, 2018

As Congress Debates CHIP, Some States Could Run Out of Funds Sooner Than Expected

Some states are facing a mid-January loss of funding for their Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) despite spending approved by Congress in late December that was expected to keep the program running for three months, federal health officials said Friday.
January 8, 2018

Drug Overdose Deaths Soar Nationally But Plateau in Some States

The opioid crisis on the East Coast and in the Midwest has fueled a national surge in drug deaths, even as fatal overdoses have decreased or remained stable in parts of the West, new federal data show.
January 5, 2018

Inside the New Proposed Federal Rules for Association Health Plans

The Department of Labor on Thursday released proposed new rules that proponents say will make it easier for businesses to band together in “associations” to buy health insurance.
January 5, 2018

Maine Voters Chose Medicaid Expansion, But Governor Threatens Not to Implement It

Donna Wall cares for her three adult autistic children at her home in Lewiston, Maine. It’s a full-time job. Sons Christopher and Brandon have frequent outbursts, and the stress of tending to them can be overwhelming
January 4, 2018

Pot Churches Proliferate as States Ease Access to Marijuana

Services at the Coachella Valley Church begin and end with the Lord’s Prayer. In between, there is the sacrament.
January 3, 2018

Pharmacists Can Dispense Life-Saving Overdose Drugs, But Do They?

Gale Dunham, a pharmacist in Calistoga, Calif., knows the devastation the opioid epidemic has wrought, and she is glad the anti-overdose drug naloxone is becoming more accessible.
December 22, 2017

Obamacare Enrollment Going Strong Despite Funding Cuts and Confusion

A day after President Donald Trump said the Affordable Care Act “has been repealed,” officials reported that 8.8 million Americans have signed up for coverage on the federal insurance exchange in 2018 — nearly reaching 2017’s number in half the sign-up time.
December 20, 2017

Unless Congress Acts, Alabama Will End 7,000 Kids' Health Insurance Jan. 1

Citing Congress’ failure to restore federal funding of the Children’s Health Insurance Program, Alabama plans to drop 7,000 kids from coverage on New Year’s Day, the first step to shutting down coverage for everyone, state officials said Monday.
December 11, 2017

Importing Prescription Drugs Is Illegal. Some Cities, Counties and Schools Are Doing It Anyway.

Schenectady County, N.Y., is on track to pay 20 percent less on prescription drugs for its employees this year than in 2003.
December 7, 2017

Medicaid Spending Increased Last Year, But at a Much Slower Pace

U.S. health spending rose to $3.3 trillion in 2016, but the pace slowed compared to the previous two years as demand for drugs, hospital care and physician services weakened, according to a federal study released Wednesday.
December 1, 2017

Texans With HIV Went Weeks Without Medicine After Hurricane Harvey

After the floods, they had to cope with ruined homes and struggle to access lifesaving medication.
November 30, 2017

On Obamacare Marketing, California Spends More Than the U.S.

The marketing blitz is on.
November 27, 2017

Not Covered by States' Surprise Medical Bill Laws? Ambulance Rides

One patient got a $3,660 bill for a 4-mile ride. Another was charged $8,460 for a trip from one hospital that could not handle his case to another that could. Still another found herself marooned at an out-of-network hospital, where she’d been taken by ambulance without her consent.
November 22, 2017

Displaced Puerto Ricans Face Obstacles Getting Health Care

The federal government has granted people affected by the devastating hurricanes that wracked coastal states and Puerto Rico 15 extra days to sign up for health coverage under the Affordable Care Act.
November 16, 2017

For Millions of Insured Americans, State Health Laws Don’t Apply

Let’s say you have health insurance through your employer and live in one of 21 states with laws protecting consumers against surprise medical bills from out-of-network providers.
November 15, 2017

Why States That Expanded Medicaid Are Ending 'Retroactive Coverage'

If you’re poor, uninsured and fall seriously ill, in most states if you qualify for Medicaid — but weren’t enrolled at the time — the program will pay your medical bills going back three months. It protects hospitals, too, from having to absorb the costs of caring for these patients.
November 14, 2017

Vaccine Shortage Complicates Battle Against Hepatitis A Outbreaks

San Diego County, battling a deadly outbreak of hepatitis A, is postponing an outreach campaign to provide the second of two inoculations against the contagious liver disease until a national shortage of the vaccine is resolved, the county’s chief public health officer said.
November 14, 2017

Trump Administration Plan to Add Medicaid Work Requirement Stirs Fears

The Trump administration’s endorsement of work requirements in Medicaid and increased state flexibility is part of broader strategy to shrink the fast-growing program for the poor and advance conservative ideas that Republicans failed to get through Congress.
November 9, 2017

Trump Administration Suggests It's Ready to Approve Work Requirements for Medicaid

The Trump administration signaled Tuesday that it would allow states to impose work requirements on some adult Medicaid enrollees, a long-sought goal for conservatives that is strongly opposed by Democrats and advocates for the poor.
November 7, 2017

Enriched by the Poor: California Health Insurers Make Billions Through Medicaid

Medicaid is rarely associated with getting rich. The patients are poor, the budgets tight and payments to doctors often paltry.
October 30, 2017

Trump's Obamacare Enrollment Cuts Will Hurt Rural Areas Most

Ms. Stella’s, a home-cooking restaurant in Milledgeville, Ga., serves roast beef, grilled pork chops, chicken wings and oxtails with 24 sides from which to choose. Last spring, owners Jeri and Lucious Trawick opened a second restaurant in Eatonton, about 20 miles away, and Jeri decided to leave her full-time job to help shepherd the expansion.
October 20, 2017

Despite Efforts To Corral Medicaid Spending, States Expand Benefits

While congressional Republicans and President Donald Trump have been seeking major cuts in federal funding of Medicaid, 26 states this year expanded or enhanced benefits and at least 17 plan to do so next year, according to a report released Thursday.
October 18, 2017

The Storm Has Passed, But Puerto Rico’s Health Faces Prolonged Recovery

As President Donald Trump signals impatience to wind down emergency aid to Puerto Rico, the challenges wrought by Hurricane Maria to the health of Puerto Ricans and the island’s fragile health system are in many ways just beginning.
October 18, 2017

On Back Roads of Appalachia’s Coal Country, Mental Health Services Are as Rare as Jobs

In rural swaths of West Virginia, getting mental health services is fraught with challenges. But the need is great.
October 18, 2017

Chasing Millions In Medicaid Dollars, Hospitals Buy Up Nursing Homes

Thanks to a unique funding process, hospitals in some states are acquiring nursing homes to help cover other costs.
October 13, 2017

What's in Trump’s Health-Care Executive Order?

The Trump administration Thursday advanced a wide-ranging executive order aimed at expanding lower-cost insurance options, allowing employers to give workers money to buy their own coverage and slowing consolidation in the insurance and hospital industries.
October 12, 2017

Trump's Threats to End Obamacare Subsidies Now Costing Taxpayers More

California's health exchange said Wednesday it has ordered insurers to add a surcharge to certain policies next year because the Trump administration has yet to commit to paying a key set of consumer subsidies under the Affordable Care Act.
October 12, 2017

Hospitals Make Housing the Homeless Part of Their Job

During the five years Tony Price roamed the streets and dozed in doorways, the emergency rooms of Sacramento’s hospitals were a regular place for him to sleep off a hard day’s drinking.
September 27, 2017

Medicaid Covers All That? It’s More Than Just Health Care for the Poor.

When high levels of lead were discovered in the public water system in Flint, Mich., in 2015, Medicaid stepped in to help thousands of children get tested for poisoning and receive care.
September 26, 2017

3rd GOP Senator Announces Opposition to Obamacare Repeal Bill

Even a partial report from the Congressional Budget Office was enough to apparently tip the scales against the latest Republican effort to overhaul the Affordable Care Act and prompted a crucial senator to announce she cannot support the bill, seemingly sinking its chances.
September 25, 2017

Trump to Shut HealthCare.Gov Down for Half of Most Sundays

The Trump administration plans to shut down the federal health insurance exchange for 12 hours during all but one Sunday in the upcoming open enrollment season.
September 20, 2017

What You Need to Know About the Last-Ditch Obamacare Repeal Bill

Republican efforts in Congress to “repeal and replace” the federal Affordable Care Act are back from the dead. Again.
September 11, 2017

As Congress Debates Health Care, Study Finds Relationship Between Medicaid and Children's Health Insurance

Efforts by Republican lawmakers to scale back Medicaid enrollment could undercut an aspect of the program that has widespread bipartisan appeal — covering more children, research published Tuesday in the journal Health Affairs suggests.
September 8, 2017

In Obamacare Hearing, Governors Press Congress for Something They May Not Deliver

Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) has a problem — and not much time to solve it.
September 7, 2017

Obamacare Hearing Highlights Different Priorities of Insurance Commissioners and Congress

A key Senate committee Wednesday launched a set of hearings intended to lead to a short-term, bipartisan bill to shore up the troubled individual health insurance market, but a diverse group of state insurance commissioners united around some solutions that were not necessarily on the table.
September 6, 2017

Some States Extend Obamacare Enrollment Beyond Trump's New Deadline

California and several other states will exempt themselves this year from a new Trump administration rule that cuts in half the amount of time consumers have to buy individual health insurance under the Affordable Care Act.
September 6, 2017

Obamacare Debate Puts State Insurance Commissioners in the Hot Seat

With insurance premiums rising and national efforts at health reform in turmoil, a group of 50 state bureaucrats whom many voters probably can’t name have considerable power over consumers’ health plans: state insurance commissioners.
September 5, 2017

States Are Transforming the Way They Treat Drug Addicts

Breann Johnson stopped using heroin on Mother’s Day this year, determined to end her 13-year addiction. Days later, she began three months of residential treatment in Riverside, Calif. — all paid for by California’s Medicaid program.
September 1, 2017

Trump Takes an Ax to Obamacare Outreach and Enrollment Funding

President Donald Trump has insisted for months that “Obamacare is already dead.”
August 30, 2017

5 Outside-the-Box Ideas for Fixing Obamacare

With Republican efforts to “repeal and replace” the Affordable Care Act stalled, tentative bipartisan initiatives are in the works to shore up the fragile individual insurance market that serves roughly 17 million Americans.
August 16, 2017

CBO: Trump's Obamacare Threat Would Raise Premiums and the Deficit

If President Donald Trump were to follow through on his threats to cut federal cost-sharing subsidies, health insurance premiums for silver plans would soar by an average of 20 percent next year and the federal deficit would rise by $194 billion over the next decade, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office said Tuesday.
August 16, 2017

Climbing Cost of Decades-Old Drugs Threatens to Break Medicaid Bank

Skyrocketing price tags for new drugs to treat rare diseases have stoked outrage nationwide. But hundreds of old, commonly used drugs cost the Medicaid program billions of extra dollars in 2016 vs. 2015, a Kaiser Health News data analysis shows. Eighty of the drugs — some generic and some still carrying brand names — proved more than two decades old.
August 11, 2017

Medi-Cal Sued for Violating Judges' Orders

Like Medicaid programs in many states that want more budgeting certainty or hope to save money, Medi-Cal is shifting many patients with complex conditions into managed care plans.
August 8, 2017

Health Gap Widens Between Appalachia and Rest of America

Sandy Willhite doesn’t mind driving 45 minutes to the nearest shopping center. But living in Hillsboro, W.Va., became problematic when she had to travel nearly six hours for proper foot treatment.
August 8, 2017

First Statewide Pay-for-Success Program Helps At-Risk Moms

Deona Scott was 24 and in her final semester at Charleston Southern University in South Carolina when she found out she was pregnant. She turned to Medicaid for maternity health coverage and learned about a free program for first-time mothers that could connect her with a nurse to answer questions about pregnancy and caring for her baby.
August 3, 2017

Obamacare Insurers Get New Hope (and Allies)

Health insurers have won powerful allies in a fight over federal subsidies that President Donald Trump has threatened to cancel for millions of people who buy insurance through the Affordable Care Act.
August 2, 2017

Why Trump Doesn't Need Congress to Cut Medicaid

After the Senate fell short in its effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act, the Trump administration is poised to use its regulatory powers to accomplish what lawmakers could not: shrink Medicaid.
July 28, 2017

States Have Tried Versions of ‘Skinny Repeal.’ It Didn’t Go Well.

Betting that thin is in — and might be the only way forward — Senate Republicans are eyeing a “skinny repeal” that rolls back an unpopular portion of the federal health law. But experts warn that the idea has been tried before, and with little success.
July 27, 2017

Medicaid Proves a Lifeline for Places That Talk Women Out of Abortions

When Taylor Merendo moved to Bloomington, Ind., nearly two years ago, fleeing an abusive marriage, she needed help.
July 25, 2017

How 2 Hospital Giants Hope to Dodge Federal Laws and Create a State-Sanctioned Monopoly

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. — Looking out a fourth-floor window of his hospital system’s headquarters, Alan Levine can see the Appalachian Mountains that have defined this hardscrabble region for generations.
July 20, 2017

Obamacare Uncertainty Leaves Insurers in Limbo

California’s Obamacare exchange scrubbed its annual rate announcement this week, the latest sign of how the ongoing political drama over the Affordable Care Act is roiling insurance markets nationwide.
July 19, 2017

GOP Failure to Replace Obamacare Was Years in the Making

Seven years of Republican vows to “repeal and replace” the Affordable Care Act came to a crashing halt Tuesday.
July 17, 2017

An Increase in the Uninsured Could Impact the Insured, Too

Much has been written lately about how individuals’ health could suffer if they lose insurance under the health proposals circulating in the U.S. House and Senate
July 12, 2017

Got Medical Debt? Thanks to State AGs, Your Credit Score Could Improve.

For many consumers, an unexpected health care calamity can quickly burgeon into a financial calamity. Just over half of all the debt that appears on credit reports is related to medical expenses, and consumers may find that their credit score gets as banged up as their body.
July 11, 2017

Senate Health Bill Forces States to Pay More for Disabled Children or Cut Their Coverage

Aidan Long is a 13-year-old from Montana who has suffered multiple daily seizures since he was 4. The seizures defy medical cure, and some of them continue for weeks, requiring Aidan to be airlifted to children’s hospitals in Denver or Seattle, said his father, Ben Long. The medical bills to Medicaid and his private insurance have been enormous.
July 10, 2017

The Senate Health Bill's Good and Bad News for Psych Patients

A little-discussed provision in the Senate health care bill is designed to boost the number of hospital beds for psychiatric care, providing a long-sought victory for mental health advocates.
June 27, 2017

CBO: Senate Bill Would Nearly Double the Uninsured Compared to Obamacare

Senate Republicans’ legislation to overhaul the Affordable Care Act would leave an additional 22 million people without health care coverage over the next decade and cut the federal deficit by $321 billion, according to a Congressional Budget Office analysis released late Monday.
June 23, 2017

Senate Health Bill Would Shift Medicaid Costs to States and Let Them End ACA Guarantees

Republicans in the U.S. Senate on Thursday unveiled a bill that would dramatically transform the nation’s Medicaid program, make significant changes to the federal health law’s tax credits that help lower-income people buy insurance and allow states to water down changes to some of the law’s coverage guarantees.
June 20, 2017

5 Things Weighed in Secret Health Bill Also Weigh It Down

Anyone following the debate over the “repeal and replace” of the Affordable Care Act knows the 13 Republican senators writing the bill are meeting behind closed doors.
June 12, 2017

Texas' Abstinence-Only Programs Could Be Contributing to Teen Pregnancy Rates

In Texas each year, about 35,000 young women get pregnant before they turn 20. Traditionally, the two variables most commonly associated with high teen birth rates are education and poverty, but a new study, co-authored by Dr. Julie DeCesare, shows that there’s more at play.
June 12, 2017

New Study Shows Minorities Get Ineffective Care From Doctors

Minority patients face a double whammy: Not only are they more likely to miss out on effective medical treatments than white patients, but, according to a new study, they’re also more likely to receive an abundance of ineffective services.
June 9, 2017

California's Aid in Dying Law Turns One, But Not All Doctors Are on Board

For some patients, finding a doctor willing to prescribe life-ending drugs can be difficult
May 26, 2017

What's the Best Way to Enroll People in Medicaid?

Postcards, robocalls and other low-tech outreach tools can be as effective as personalized enrollment assistance at encouraging eligible people to sign up for Medicaid, a new study found.
May 25, 2017

CBO: House Bill Would Leave 23 Million More Uninsured and Destabilize the Market in Some States

The Republican overhaul of the federal health law passed by the House this month would result in slightly lower premiums and slightly fewer uninsured Americans than an earlier proposal.
May 24, 2017

New York Applies Special Pressure to Prescription Drugmakers

New York Medicaid regulators aim to use the threat of imposing increased scrutiny of prescription drugs — such as eyeing their relative effectiveness and their profit margins — to coax additional discounts from drugmakers.
May 17, 2017

The Secret Sauce in Maine's Successful High-Risk Insurance Pool

As the GOP health care bill moves from the U.S. House of Representatives to the Senate, many consumers and lawmakers are especially worried that people with preexisting conditions won’t be able to find affordable health coverage.
May 11, 2017

CMS Gives States Until 2022 to Meet Medicaid Standards of Care

The Trump administration has given states three extra years to carry out plans for helping elderly and disabled people receive Medicaid services without being forced to go into nursing homes.
May 8, 2017

Why Blue States Might Ditch Beloved Obamacare Protections

With limited federal subsidies under the GOP health care bill, experts say states like California and New York would be under pressure to cut costs.
May 5, 2017

5 Things to Watch as the GOP Health Bill Heads to U.S. Senate

After weeks of will-they-or-won’t-they tensions, the House managed to pass its GOP replacement for the Affordable Care Act on Thursday by a razor-thin margin. The vote was 217-213.
May 4, 2017

Pseudoscience Fuels Minnesota Measles Outbreak

Health officials in Minnesota are scrambling to contain a measles outbreak that has sickened primarily Somali-American children. Officials have identified 34 cases as of Wednesday, and they’re worried there will be more.
April 28, 2017

If Trump Defunds 'Sanctuary Cities,’ Public Health Could Suffer

Local health officials are bracing for the potential impact of a Trump administration policy that would stop federal funding to jurisdictions that don’t enforce federal immigration laws.
April 26, 2017

Pre-Obamacare, Preexisting Conditions Plagued States and Insurers

For most of his life, Carl Goulden had near-perfect health. He and his wife, Wanda, say that changed 10 years ago. Carl remembered feeling “a lot of pain in the back, tired, fatigue, yellow eyes — a lot of jaundice.”
April 17, 2017

Can We Tax Away the Opioid Crisis?

California lawmakers this month will consider legislation that would impose a tax on prescription opioids such as OxyContin and Norco to raise money for addiction treatment and prevention programs.
April 13, 2017

As Medicaid Expansion Experiences a Revival, New Data Show It Pays Off

Although the GOP-controlled Congress is pledging its continued interest — despite stalls and snags — to dismantle Obamacare, some “red state” legislatures are changing course and showing a newfound interest in embracing the health law’s Medicaid expansion.
April 5, 2017

CMS Chief Recuses Herself From Major Medicaid Decision

Seema Verma, the former health policy consultant now overseeing Medicare and Medicaid for the Trump administration, will not take part in one of her agency’s most anticipated decisions because of a conflict of interest.
April 5, 2017

Instead of Keeping Federal Funds From Abortion Providers, Missouri Rejects Them Altogether

Hospitals in Missouri are grappling with a new state rule that forces them to choose between providing abortions for women in high-risk situations or receiving family planning funds for low-income women.
March 22, 2017

Medicaid Caps in GOP Bill Could Shrink Seniors’ Benefits

Before nursing home patient Carmencita Misa became bedridden, she was a veritable “dancing queen,” says her daughter, Charlotte Altieri.
March 6, 2017

Study: Medicaid Expansion Made It Easier to Get a Doctor's Appointment

More than 14 million adults have enrolled in Medicaid since the health law passed, and that has caused some hand-wringing over whether there would be enough primary care providers to meet the demand. But a study out this week suggests that the newly insured people are generally able to get timely appointments for primary care.
February 28, 2017

Fact-Checking Indiana’s Claims About Its Medicaid Experiment

The federal government approved the experiment, called the Healthy Indiana Plan, or HIP 2.0, which is now up for a three-year renewal.
February 23, 2017

Fearing Deportation, Some Immigrants Forego Health Care

Some foreign-born Californians are canceling their Medi-Cal coverage or declining to enroll in the first place, citing fears of a Trump administration crackdown on immigrants.
February 16, 2017

While Congress Stalls, White House Releases Rules Meant to Stabilize Health Insurance Market

While Congress continues to struggle with how to “repeal and replace” the Affordable Care Act, the Trump administration today unveiled its first regulation aimed at keeping insurers participating in the individual market in 2018.
February 13, 2017

What Made Obamacare Succeed In Some States (Hint: It’s Not Politics)

Ask anyone about their health care and you are likely to hear about ailments, doctors, maybe costs and insurance hassles.
February 8, 2017

Obama's Drug Czar on Opioids, Trump and Repealing the ACA

The GOP is working to repeal and replace the 2010 health law, known for insuring more than 20 million people. And the change could affect another health concern: the nation’s opioid abuse problem.
February 2, 2017

In Pence's Home State, Republicans Want to Keep Obamacare's Medicaid Expansion

As Congress weighs repeal of the Affordable Care Act, the home state of Vice President Mike Pence Tuesday sought to keep its conservative-style Medicaid expansion under the federal health law.
February 2, 2017

Trump’s Immigration Policy Fuels Fear for Some Young Doctors

With announcements of placements in residencies expected in March, medical education groups and hospitals say they’re unsure how to proceed.
January 25, 2017

Everything You Need to Know About Block Grants, the Heart of GOP’s Medicaid Plans

President Donald Trump’s administration made explicit this weekend its commitment to an old GOP strategy for managing Medicaid, the federal-state insurance plan that covers low-income people — turning control of the program to states and capping what the federal government spends on it each year.
January 17, 2017

GOP Vows to Defund Planned Parenthood. As States Learned, That's Hard.

If “repeal and replace” of the Affordable Care Act is Republicans’ job one, defunding Planned Parenthood is a close second.
January 5, 2017

In Towns That Lost Most Obamacare Insurers, Premiums Are Still Competitive

People in this city had their pick of four health insurers last year when they shopped for policies during the Affordable Care Act’s open enrollment.
January 4, 2017

For States Seeking Medicaid Work Requirements, Montana May Be a Model

Montana State Senator Ed Buttrey is a no-nonsense businessman from Great Falls. Like a lot of Republicans, he’s not a fan of the Affordable Care Act, nor its expansion of Medicaid, the health insurance for the poor and disabled.
December 7, 2016

Medicaid Coverage for Addiction Treatment Varies Dramatically by State

When Ashley Hurteau, 32, was arrested in 2015, she faced a list of charges for crimes she committed to finance a drug craving she had struggled with for more than a decade.
November 30, 2016

Price’s Appointment Boosts GOP Plans to Overhaul Medicaid

President-elect Donald Trump’s selection of Rep. Tom Price to head the Department of Health and Human Services signals that the new administration is all-in on both efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act and restructure Medicare and Medicaid.
November 10, 2016

Millions Could Lose Health Care Under Trump Plan

Millions of low-income Americans on Medicaid could lose their health coverage if President-elect Donald Trump and a Republican-controlled Congress follow through on GOP proposals to cut spending in the state-federal insurance program.
October 31, 2016

An Idea Borrowed From South Africa: Ordinary Citizens Fill Gaps In Health Care

A New York group seeks to show that a health coach who is also a neighbor can help patients and save money.
October 28, 2016

California Rules About Violence Against Health Workers Could Become a National Model

Workers in California’s hospitals and doctors’ offices may be less likely to get hit, kicked, bitten or grabbed under workplace standards adopted by a state workplace safety board.
October 21, 2016

To Curb Unintended Pregnancy, States Turn to IUDs -- in the Delivery Room

Peggy Wall, a family nurse practitioner at a local community health center, treats many women in their 40s, who already have a family and find themselves confronting an accidental pregnancy.
October 20, 2016

In Oregon, a Test Case for Medicaid Expansion, Results Defy Expectations

Will Medicaid expansion save the country money as people stop using expensive emergency rooms for primary care?
October 14, 2016

States Increase Cost Controls to Manage Medicaid Growth

With a record 73 million people enrolled in Medicaid, most states next year will tighten controls on spending to battle swelling budgets in the public health insurance program for low-income and disabled Americans, according to a report released Thursday.
October 11, 2016

California Taps Marriage Therapists to Fill Mental Health Care Gaps

The staff of Clinica Sierra Vista, which has health centers throughout the Central Valley, screened its mostly low-income patients last year for mental health needs and determined that nearly 30 percent suffered from depression, anxiety or alcoholism.
September 30, 2016

UnitedHealth and University of California Forge Unique Alliance

The nation’s largest health insurer and the University of California Health system are joining forces to create a new health plan option for employers and expand research into patient data.
September 26, 2016

The Never-Ending Debate About Fluoride in Tap Water

Many people take for granted the addition of fluoride into public drinking water systems that aims to prevent tooth decay.
September 13, 2016

In States That Didn't Expand Medicaid, Rural Hospitals Hit Harder

It isn’t news that in rural parts of the country, people have a harder time accessing good health care. But new evidence suggests opposition to a key part of the 2010 health overhaul could be adding to the gap.
September 2, 2016

Why Teen Pregnancies Dropped: More Contraceptives, Not Less Sex

Teen pregnancy is way down. And a study suggests that the reason is increased, and increasingly effective, use of contraceptives.
August 29, 2016

In Boston’s ‘Safe Space,’ Surprising Insights Into Drug Highs

Some arrive on their own, worried about what was really in that bag of heroin. Some are carried in, slumped between two friends.
August 19, 2016

‘Mental Health First Aid’ and Other Steps -- NYC's First Lady on Fixing the System

For Chirlane McCray, New York City’s first lady, mental illness is not an abstract concern.
August 19, 2016

Giving Birth in Georgia Is Too Often a Deadly Event

Georgia enjoys its image as the Empire State of the South, a leader among its Deep South neighbors, the first to have an Olympic city and the first to send a native son to the White House.
August 5, 2016

Why Colorado Wants to Hire Bernie Sanders

Backers of ColoradoCare — the state ballot initiative that would establish universal health care in Colorado — think they have the perfect job for former presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders.
August 1, 2016

Long-Term Care Is an Immediate Problem — for Government

Medicaid has become the safety net for millions of people who find themselves unable to pay for nursing home beds or in-home caregivers. Medicaid was never intended to cover long-term care for everyone. Now it pays for nearly 40 percent of the nation’s long-term care expenses, and the share is growing.
July 22, 2016

Mike Pence’s Health Policy Record Is a Mixed Bag

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence is in the spotlight this week as the man Donald Trump has picked to be his running mate.
July 20, 2016

13% Jump in California Health Premiums Could Reverberate Throughout U.S.

California’s Obamacare premiums will jump 13.2 percent on average next year, a sharp increase that is likely to reverberate nationwide in an election year.
July 14, 2016

As Another Obamacare Insurer Falls, the Remaining 7 Go Into Survival Mode

New failures are piling up among the member-run health insurance co-ops carrying out one of the Affordable Care Act’s most idealistic goals, leaving just seven remaining when the health law’s fourth enrollment season starts in the fall.
July 12, 2016

Why So Many Toddlers Are Losing Health Insurance

Many babies born to mothers who are covered by Medicaid are automatically eligible for that coverage during the first year of their lives.
July 6, 2016

Zika Warnings' Unintended Consequence

Enhancing mosquito control. Encouraging safe sex. Advising people to minimize travel to infected areas.
July 5, 2016

For Hepatitis C Patients, States' Lawsuits Pay Off

After legal battles and lobbying efforts, tens of thousands of people with hepatitis C are gaining earlier access to expensive drugs that can cure this condition.
July 5, 2016

The Barriers Keeping Young People Off Obamacare

The Obama administration is making a push to get young adults covered on the health insurance marketplaces, both for their own good and that of the marketplaces, which need healthy people to balance sicker ones in the risk pool.
June 30, 2016

Some States Ease Privacy Concerns for Young Adults Still on Parents' Health Plan

The health law opened the door for millions of young adults to stay on their parents’ health insurance until they turn 26. But there’s a downside to remaining on the family plan.
June 20, 2016

Despite Overdose Epidemic, Georgia Caps Number of Opioid Treatment Clinics

Zac Talbott sees the irony of running an opioid treatment program from a former doctor’s office.
June 17, 2016

Where Autism Therapy Is Harder to Get

Like many parents of children with autism, Braulio De La Cruz sought an expensive therapy called applied behavioral analysis — or ABA – when his son Noah Leonardo was diagnosed last year. This story was produced by Kaiser Health News, an editorially independent program of the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonprofit, nonpartisan health policy research and communication organization not affiliated with Kaiser Permanente.
June 16, 2016

To Prevent Unplanned Pregnancies, Feds Urge States to Do More

The federal government, which spends billions of dollars each year covering unintended pregnancies, is encouraging states to adopt policies that might boost the number of Medicaid enrollees who use long-acting, reversible contraceptives.
June 13, 2016

As Hospital Chains Grow, So Do Their Prices for Care

As health care consolidation accelerates nationwide, a new study shows that hospital prices in two of California’s largest health systems were 25 percent higher than at other hospitals around the state.
June 9, 2016

The Med School That Mixes Science and Health Policy

Medical students cram a lot of basic science and medicine into their first two years of training. But most learn next to nothing about the intricacies of the health care system they are soon to enter.
June 6, 2016

How Altering Death Certificates Could Aid the Drug Crisis

Dr. James Gill walked through the morgue in Farmington, Connecticut, recently, past the dock where the bodies come in, past the tissue donations area, and stopped outside the autopsy room.
May 18, 2016

New Wellness Program Rules Elicit Mixed Reactions

Employers seeking to get workers to join wellness programs and provide medical information can set financial rewards – or penalties – of up to 30 percent of the cost for an individual in the company’s health insurance plan, according to controversial rules finalized by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Monday.
May 17, 2016

Health Coverage Rates for Lower Income Children Improving

Bolstered by the federal health care law, the number of lower income kids getting health coverage continues to improve, a recent study found.
May 12, 2016

Study: Autism Insurance Mandates Are 'Necessary But Not Sufficient'

Forty-four states and the District of Columbia have laws on the books requiring health insurers to cover autism treatments.
May 12, 2016

After Years of Modesty, California Health Premiums May Rise More

California’s health insurance exchange estimates that its Obamacare premiums may rise 8 percent on average next year, which would end two consecutive years of more modest 4 percent increases.
May 2, 2016

HHS Extends Medicaid to More Ex-Prisoners

Administration officials moved Thursday to improve low Medicaid enrollment for emerging prisoners, urging states to start signups before release and expanding eligibility to thousands of former inmates in halfway houses near the end of their sentences.
April 11, 2016

California's Unprecedented Move in Regulating Health Plans

Moving into a realm usually reserved for health care regulators, the California health marketplace Thursday unveiled sweeping reforms to its contracts with insurers, seeking to improve the quality of care, curb its cost and increase transparency for consumers.
March 31, 2016

A Crisis With Little Data: States Begin to Count Drug-Dependent Babies

How do fix a problem if you don’t know its size?
March 23, 2016

Hackers Target Hospitals for Ransom

Hackers demanded a ransom from two more Southern California hospitals last week and federal authorities are investigating the case.
March 4, 2016

Boston Brings Safe Spaces for Drug Users to America

A Boston nonprofit plans to soon test a new way of addressing the city’s heroin epidemic. The idea is simple: Starting in March, along a stretch of road that has come to be called Boston’s “Methadone Mile,” the program will open a room with a nurse, some soft chairs and basic life-saving equipment — a place where heroin users can ride out their high, under medical supervision.
February 24, 2016

As Rural Hospitals Struggle, Their Labor and Delivery Units Are Dying Off

A few years ago, when a young woman delivered her baby at Alleghany Memorial Hospital in Sparta, North Carolina, it was in the middle of a Valentine’s Day ice storm and the mountain roads out of town were impassable.
February 22, 2016

The Struggle to Sell Tap Water's Benefits in an Age of Flint

The water crisis in Flint, Michigan, is making some public health messages harder to get across — namely, in most communities, the tap water is perfectly safe. And it is so much healthier than sugary drinks.
February 18, 2016

In Freddie Gray’s Neighborhood, the Best Medical Care Is Close But Elusive

The Baltimore health system put Robert Peace back together after a car crash shattered his pelvis. Then it nearly killed him, he says.
February 17, 2016

Federal Funding Ban on Needle Exchanges Lifted

At precisely 8:30 a.m. on a Tuesday morning, the doors to the needle exchange on Skid Row open and the daily procession of injection drug users begins.
February 5, 2016

2016 Obamacare Enrollment Exceeds Last Year's by 1 Million

About 12.7 million Americans enrolled in private health insurance through the federal and state marketplaces for 2016, the Obama administration said Thursday.
January 29, 2016

Feds Clarify Confusion Over Health Care After an Out-of-State Move

After the open enrollment period ends on Sunday for buying coverage on the health insurance marketplaces, people can generally sign up for or switch marketplace plans only if they have certain major life changes, such as losing their on-the-job coverage or getting married. Following insurance industry criticism, last week the federal government said it will scrutinize people’s applications for such “special enrollment periods” more closely, including one of the most commonly cited reasons — relocating to a new state.
January 22, 2016

How States Have Made It Easier to Sign Up for Medicaid

Getting on Medicaid has never been so easy.
January 14, 2016

Obama's New Plan to Convince Holdout States to Expand Medicaid

With full federal funding for expanding Medicaid set to expire at the end this year, President Barack Obama is proposing to indefinitely extend the health law provision for any of the 19 states that have not yet adopted the enhanced eligibility.
January 6, 2016

Feds Fund Effort to Connect Medical and Social Services

The federal government has announced a $157 million project to help hospitals and doctors link Medicare and Medicaid patients to needed social services that sometimes have a bigger impact on their health than medical interventions.
December 21, 2015

New Kaiser Permanente Med School Part of a Growing Trend

Thursday’s announcement by Kaiser Permanente that it plans to open its own medical school in Southern California has attracted a lot of attention in the health care community.
December 18, 2015

Feds Investigate Discrimination Allegations in California's Medicaid Program

A coalition of civil rights advocates Tuesday called for a federal investigation of California’s Medicaid program, alleging that it discriminates against millions of low-income Latinos by denying them equal access to health care.
December 17, 2015

'Multi-State' Health Plans Fail to Deliver Promises

A health law insurance program that was expected to boost consumer choice and competition on the marketplaces has slipped off course and is so far failing to meet expectations.
December 11, 2015

California Leads Rethinking of Addiction Treatment for the Poor

Through what’s known as a drug waiver, state officials will have new spending flexibility as they try to improve outcomes and reduce social and financial costs of people with substance abuse disorders.
December 11, 2015

What Cities Have the Worst STD Problems? LMGTFY

Researchers can mine Google data to identify searched phrases that spiked during previous upticks in a particular disease. Then, they measure the frequency of those searches in real time to estimate the number of emerging cases.
December 10, 2015

Obama Officials Testify on the State of State-Run Health Exchanges

State insurance exchanges are healthy financially even without the federal funding that ran out this year, a top Obama administration official told a House subcommittee Tuesday.
December 8, 2015

The County Using Churches to Improve Mental Health Care

Because of the importance of churches in African-American communities, Alameda County has focused specifically on churches, inviting religious leaders to discussions about mental health and funding workshops to help congregants reach out to one another.
December 3, 2015

What Happens If Kentucky Ends Its State-Run Obamacare Exchange?

Gov.-elect Matt Bevin’s plan to end Kynect has brought a strong rebuke from Obamacare advocates and the outgoing governor, but it’s also revived questions about whether the states or the federal government are best positioned to run the marketplaces.
December 2, 2015

Unreliable Online Tools Make Medical Comparison Shopping a Problem

Several states mandate public reporting of price information, but online cost estimators offered through insurance company are often inaccurate.
December 1, 2015

Why Colorado's Obamacare Co-Op Is Falling, and Connecticut's Isn't

Many co-op plans were priced low, and customers poured in. But these new customers had high health costs, so the co-ops had to start paying a lot of bills. The math didn’t add up.
November 30, 2015

Medicaid Managed Care Leaves $1 Billion Hole in California Budget

California lawmakers are staring down a $1.1 billion hole in next year’s health budget after failing to come up with a way to replace the state’s “managed care organization tax” on health insurance plans that serve Medi-Cal managed care recipients.
November 23, 2015

After California, Assisted Suicide Group Plans for More State Fights

Since Gov. Jerry Brown signed California’s end-of-life options bill last month, a new chapter is starting for Compassion & Choices, a Denver-based nonprofit that led the campaign for the measure and has pushed for such laws for nearly 19 years. California is the fifth state, and largest by far, to allow physicians to prescribe lethal doses of drugs to patients who want to end their lives in their last stages of terminal illnesses.
November 23, 2015

Half of Hepatitis C Drug Requests Are Denied by Medicaid

Researches found insurers denied 16 percent of prescriptions for expensive drugs like Sovaldi, Harvoni and Viekira Pak, the drugs. The proportion of Medicaid denials, however, was 46 percent.
November 17, 2015

Obamacare's Most Popular Plans Offer Poor HIV Drug Coverage

In most states, consumers with HIV or AIDS who buy silver-level plans on the insurance marketplaces find limited coverage of common drug regimens they may need and high out-of-pocket costs, according to a new analysis.
November 13, 2015

Some Health Providers Now Sell Insurance Too

In 2014, 13 percent of health care systems in the United States offered plans that covered 18 million members, or about 8 percent of all people with insurance. Most of the people covered by provider-led plans are in Medicaid managed care or Medicare Advantage plans.
November 11, 2015

In California, Medicaid's Cancer Care Lags Behind Other Plans

Cancer patients insured by California’s health plan for low-income people are less likely to get recommended treatment and also have lower survival rates than patients with other types of insurance, according to a new study by University of California-Davis researchers.
November 9, 2015

Why Many States Now Have Stem Cell Research Programs

Three after George W. Bush restricted the use of federal funding for embryonic stem cell research, California started its own multi-billion dollar stem cell program. Today at least seven states offer stem cell research funding or other incentives to local scientists and industry.
November 6, 2015

Small Businesses Don't Want SHOP Exchange for Health Insurance

About 85,000 people, from 11,000 small businesses, have coverage through the online marketplace known as the Small Business Health Options Program, or SHOP. That’s less than 1 percent of people with coverage in the U.S.
November 3, 2015

How Texas Is Learning to Like Obamacare

Many Texas Republicans still consider the Affordable Care Act to be political kryptonite, but at the local level policymakers are coming around.
November 2, 2015

Visiting Prisons and Fishing Docks to Reach the Uninsured

On fishing piers in Maine, inside public libraries in rural Iowa and at insurer-run retail stores in Minnesota, the hunt for uninsured Americans will reignite Sunday when Obamacare’s third open enrollment season starts.
October 21, 2015

Many States Still Don't Know How to Regulate Medical Marijuana

Years after voters made medical marijuana legal, Montana and some other states struggle to regulate it.
October 21, 2015

How North Carolina Is Trying To Reshape Medicaid

The state, which has not expanded Medicaid under the health law, struggled with huge Medicaid cost overruns from 2010 through 2013. That sent lawmakers looking for a better way to manage it, even though a signature part of the program has won national awards for quality and cost.
October 19, 2015

New York Takes First Action With New Surprise Medical Bills Law

The new law aims to reduce the number of consumers who get surprise bills when they unknowingly see providers who are not part of their insurance plan networks.
October 19, 2015

Medicaid Spending Soars, Mostly in Expansion States

Medicaid spending soared nearly 14 percent last year—its biggest annual increase in at least two decades—as a result of millions of newly eligible low-income enrollees signing up under the Affordable Care Act, according to a report released Thursday by the Kaiser Family Foundation.
October 14, 2015

To Help Female Prisoners Lose Weight, Some Turn to Spin Classes

In 2011, biking advocates from the non-profit group Gearing Up persuaded prison administrators to let them bring in bikes to teach indoor cycling to female inmates, who tend to gain more weight in prison than men.
October 9, 2015

Study: Health Care Costs More in Areas Where Large Doctor Groups Dominate

Although larger practices have the resources to provide benefits to patients through better care coordination or access to new technologies, these practices’ greater market power may enable them to charge higher prices.
October 6, 2015

Telemedicine Is Expanding, But No One Knows If It Saves Money

The service is useful for patients in rural areas, but right now the financial benefits are just theoretical.
October 6, 2015

Chronically Ill Pay More With Obamacare Plans Than Employer Coverage

Chronically ill people enrolled in individual health plans sold on the Affordable Care Act insurance exchanges pay on average twice as much out-of-pocket for prescription drugs each year than people covered through their workplace, according to a study published Monday in the Health Affairs journal.
October 5, 2015

Medicaid's Newly Insured Treasure Coverage, Despite Problems

Problems have plagued the roll out of Obamacare. Three million more people than expected have signed up for Medicaid in California. Other states have also witnessed surges far beyond initial projections, including Kentucky, Michigan, Oregon and Washington State.
September 29, 2015

Under New Law, D.C. Women Can Get a Year’s Worth of Contraceptives at Once

Prescriptions for birth control pills typically have to be renewed every 30 or 90 days, potentially resulting in women missing scheduled pills. The yearlong provision will begin in 2017.
September 23, 2015

New Website Reveals Cost of California Medical Procedures

The site provides information on quality for five common conditions or procedures: childbirth, hip and knee replacement, colon cancer screening, diabetes, and back pain. And it gives cost information — by county for 100 procedures, ranging from treating a broken ankle to cancer chemotherapy.
September 23, 2015

Employers Shift More Health Costs to Workers, Survey Finds

Premiums for job-based medical insurance rose moderately — 4 percent in 2015 — but employers continued to shift in expenses to workers, according to a new survey.
September 16, 2015

Older Adults Aren't Getting Their Vaccines

Vaccination rates for children have steadily risen well over 90 percent the past few years, but the rates for Americans older than 60 getting flu, pneumonia, tetanus or shingles shots – the four most used vaccines among the elderly ‑- have stayed stubbornly flat.
September 9, 2015

Many Health Programs at Risk of Losing Crucial Funds, Not Just Planned Parenthood

Planned Parenthood is not the only health program the GOP is targeting. Dozens of other health programs were set for cuts as well.
September 8, 2015

Massachusetts, a Leader in Cost Control, Sees Health Spending Rise Too Much

Massachusetts spent $632 million more on health care last year than it aimed to.
September 8, 2015

HHS Unveils Rules to Ban Discrimination of Transgender Patients

The Obama administration issued a sweeping proposal Thursday to bolster civil rights protections in health care, barring medical providers and insurers from discriminating based on gender, whether in treatments or access to facilities or services.
September 4, 2015

How Rural Texas Is Trying to Lure Mental Health Providers

Of the 254 counties in Texas, 185 have no psychiatrist. How do you persuade students to become psychiatrists, social workers and psychologists, and then be willing to work in rural areas?
September 1, 2015

Amid Closing Abortion Clinics, Ohio Opens a New One

Dr. David Burkons graduated from medical school and began practicing obstetrics and gynecology in 1973 – the same year of the Supreme Court’s landmark abortion decision in Roe v. Wade.
August 31, 2015

Private Money Saves Birth Control Program in Colorado

A Colorado birth control program that has cut unintended pregnancies and abortions by nearly half since 2009 will stay alive for at least one more year thanks to $2 million in donations from private foundations.
August 24, 2015

Why 2 Million People Aren't Taking Advantage of Insurance Subsidies

More than 2 million people with coverage on the health insurance exchanges may be missing out on subsidies that could lower their deductibles, copayments and maximum out-of-pocket spending limits, according to a new analysis by Avalere Health.
August 18, 2015

Can California Treat All Children With Severe Illnesses Through Medi-Cal?

Beginning next year, state officials want to fold a $2 billion program for children with severe illnesses or birth defects in Medi-Cal managed care. But many families and children’s advocates are strenuously opposed.
August 17, 2015

The Difficult Task of Determining Real Medical Costs

Even in Massachusetts, where a 2012 health care cost control law requires that hospitals and doctors provide patients with the price of a test, exam or treatment within two business days of the request, it's still pretty hard to figure out how much a visit is going to cost patients.
August 14, 2015

States Find It Difficult to Provide Sufficient Mental Health Care

California has taken the most proactive stance in the nation in enforcing laws to ensure people with mental illnesses have fair and timely access to care. But even there, it’s proving difficult to ensure mental patients truly have equal access to treatment.
August 14, 2015

Bush and Walker Claim to Have Defunded Planned Parenthood, But Did They Really?

The undercover videos purporting to show officials of Planned Parenthood bargaining over the sale of fetal tissue have made the promise to defund the organization one of the most popular refrains on the Republican presidential campaign trail.
August 10, 2015

Study Challenges Assumptions About Hospital 'Frequent Fliers'

Super-utilizers are the frequent fliers of the health care system, whose serious illnesses send them to the hospital multiple times every year and cost the system hundreds of thousands of dollars annually.
July 28, 2015

California Court Refuses to Rule on Assisted Suicide

Christy O’Donnell may not get the death she had hoped for — one that right-to-die advocates say she deserves.
July 23, 2015

Feds Push States to Negotiate Lower Obamacare Rates

Some analysts who have looked at health insurers’ proposed premiums for next year predict major increases for policies sold on state and federal health exchanges. Others say it’s too soon to tell.
July 16, 2015

California's New Method of Making Birth Control Easier to Get Is Catching On

California and Oregon will be the first states in the nation to allow women to get birth control pills and other hormonal contraceptives directly from their pharmacists – without a doctor’s prescription.
July 13, 2015

Maryland Extends In Vitro Coverage Mandate to Gay Couples

Maryland required insurers to cover in vitro fertilization, but it was generally difficult for same-sex couples to get coverage for such treatment.
July 10, 2015

California Shelves Doctor-Assisted Suicide Bill

Backers of a bill that would have allowed terminally ill Californians to get lethal prescriptions to end their lives shelved the legislation Tuesday morning because they lacked the votes to move it out of a key committee.
July 8, 2015

Health Advocates in California Support Coverage of Children in State Illegally

The coverage under Medi-Cal, the state’s version of Medicaid, is expected to result in more preventive care and better long-term health for an estimated 170,000 children who have long relied on safety-net clinics and emergency rooms. Now advocates are calling on the state to cover adults, too.
June 25, 2015

In a First, California Caps What Patients Pay for Pricey Drugs

Expensive specialty medicines used to treat cancer and chronic illnesses have forced some very ill Americans to choose between getting proper treatment and paying their rent.
June 25, 2015

When Do Workplace Wellness Plans Become Coercive?

Christine White pays $300 a year more for her health care because she refused to join her former employer’s wellness program, which would have required that she fill out a health questionnaire and join activities like Weight Watchers.
June 10, 2015

HHS Says It’s Up to States, Congress, to Help Consumers If Court Strikes Down Subsidies

Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell said the administration will work with states to help mitigate the consequences for consumers if the Supreme Court ruled against federal subsidies.
June 10, 2015

Which Hospitals Overcharge the Most?

The highest-charging U.S. hospitals are for-profits institutions concentrated in Florida.
June 4, 2015

More People Going to Health Clinics Since Obamacare Started

Many expected the insurance exchange, or marketplace, established under the Affordable Care Act would reduce the number of uninsured patients the clinic sees. The opposite happened.
June 3, 2015

Why Is Texas Limiting Telemedicine?

New rules from the Texas Medical Board could make it a lot harder for people to get antibiotics through telemedicine. In response to the board’s restrictions, Teladoc, the largest telemedicine provider in the U.S., has filed a lawsuit that accuses the medical board of artificially limiting supply and increasing prices.
May 26, 2015

Assisted Suicide Still Happens Where It's Illegal

Physician-assisted suicide is only legal in five states. But it still happens in the other 45 states.
May 18, 2015

Why It's So Hard to Find a Good Nursing Home in Texas

Texas has the highest percentage of one-and two-star facilities in the country: 51 percent of its nursing homes are rated “below average,” or “much below average.” Louisiana is close behind at 49 percent, with Oklahoma, Georgia and West Virginia tying for third at 46 percent.
May 12, 2015

Obama Clarifies What Birth Control Insurers Must Cover 100%

Free means free.
May 8, 2015

Study Finds Patients Not Actually Hurt When Local Hospitals Close

Changes in death rates of people on Medicare — both those who had been in the hospital and among the broader populace — were no different than those for people in similar places where no hospital had closed.
May 7, 2015

Florida Governor's Meeting in D.C. Yields No Change

Florida Gov. Rick Scott’s high-stakes visit to Washington Wednesday to persuade the Obama administration to keep the federal government’s $1 billion in annual funding for hospital care of the poor produced no breakthrough.
May 5, 2015

Why Not Just Pay Medicaid Enrollees to Get Healthier?

Among the biggest obstacles is simply getting the word out to enrollees that they can earn benefits if they lose weight or quit smoking.
May 1, 2015

Montana Governor Signs Medicaid Expansion Law

Backers of Medicaid expansion celebrated in Helena Wednesday as Gov. Steve Bullock signed the bill extending the health coverage to an estimated 45,000 more Montanans.
April 14, 2015

Why Urban Hospitals Are Leaving Cities for Fancy Suburbs

By moving to wealthier areas, hospitals can reduce the percent of uninsured and lower-paying Medicaid patients, while increasing the proportion of privately insured patients.
April 9, 2015

Houston Now Has Doctors to Help 911 Callers

The organization brought doctors on because it was getting a lot of calls that weren't emergencies.
April 6, 2015

Medicaid Expansion Causes 40% Drop in Cleveland Clinic Charity Cases

The hospital also announced that 2014 was an “extraordinary” financial year, with operating income up 60 percent.
April 1, 2015

The Big Change Coming to Mental Health

A new National Institute of Mental Health research plan could change how mental illness is diagnosed and treated.
March 25, 2015

Even Male Nurses Earn More Than Female Colleagues

Even after controlling for age, race, marital status and children in the home, males in nursing out-earned females by nearly $3,900 in hospitals.
March 20, 2015

Most Americans Unaware Obamacare Subsidies Are At Risk

Despite months of news coverage, most people say they have heard little or nothing about a Supreme Court case that could eliminate subsidies helping millions of Americans afford coverage under the federal health law, according to a poll released Thursday.
March 18, 2015

Rural Hospitals Face Tough New Challenges Due to ACA

Declining federal reimbursements for hospitals under the Affordable Care Act are the principal reason for closures. The law reduced payments to hospitals for the uninsured on the assumption that states would expand their Medicaid programs.
March 17, 2015

It Helps a Lot When Patients Make Decisions About Their Treatment

In many hospitals and clinics around the country, oncologists and surgeons simply tell cancer patients what treatments they should have, or at least give them strong recommendations. But in some hospitals doctors and patients are working together to make choices about care.
March 16, 2015

Credit Agencies Agree to Be More Flexible About Medical Debt

Too many consumers have learned the hard way that their credit rating can be tarnished by medical bills they may not owe or when disputes delay insurer payment.
March 13, 2015

California Still Has 3 Million Uninsured People

Advocates say the state's counties need to shore up care for their remaining uninsured residents.
March 11, 2015

Republicans Kill Montana Governor’s Medicaid Expansion Plan

Obamacare’s tenuous toehold in Montana appears to be growing no firmer. Despite a hearing crowded with supporters of the Democratic governor’s Medicaid expansion bill, Republican legislators have dealt the measure a likely death blow.
March 10, 2015

Obamacare Insurers Must Start Updating Doctor Directories

Starting next year, the federal government will require health insurers to give millions of Americans enrolled in Medicare Advantage plans or in policies sold in the federally run health exchange up-to-date details about which doctors are in their plans and taking new patients.
March 9, 2015

New Federal Rule Extends Medical Leave Rights to Same-Sex Couples in All States

Starting March 27, legally married same-sex couples will be able to take unpaid time off to care for a spouse or sick family members even if they live in a state that doesn’t recognize their marriage.
March 2, 2015

More Than 1 in 4 Foster Kids Miss Required Checkups

Twenty-nine percent of children taken from their families and placed in foster care failed to receive at least one required medical checkup, the Health and Human Services Department Office of the Inspector General said in a report out today.
February 19, 2015

Dental Coverage Now Available to Many on Medicaid, but It's Still Hard to See a Dentist

Many states adding dental coverage are struggling to meet the high demand for services.
February 17, 2015

Government Toughens Grading System for Nursing Homes

Starting immediately, the federal government is making it harder for nursing homes to get top grades on a public report card, in part by increasing scrutiny of their use of anti-psychotic drugs and raising the bar on an array of quality measures.
February 16, 2015

Real Prices for 70 Health Care Procedures Now Posted Online shows the average local cost for many common diagnoses and medical tests in most states. That’s the real cost — not “charges” that often get marked down — based on a giant database of what insurance companies pay.
February 10, 2015

Health Experts Propose Real Ideas to Improve Obamacare

Beyond "repeal and replace," people at the National Health Policy Conference pitched improvements to the Affordable Care Act.
February 6, 2015

Measles Outbreak Sparks Bid to Eliminate Vaccine Exemption

State lawmakers in California introduced legislation Wednesday that would require children to be fully vaccinated before going to school, a response to a measles outbreak that started in Southern California and has reached 107 cases in 14 states.
February 3, 2015

Suprisingly, Florida Has a Lot of Obamacare Signups

Why Florida is number one in ACA enrollment despite GOP opposition.
February 2, 2015

California Launches Campaign to Curb E-Cigarette Smoking

As the popularity of electronic cigarettes continues to grow, California’s top public health official warned residents Wednesday about their dangers and announced a new campaign to reduce their use.
January 26, 2015

California Court-Ordered to Make Timely Decisions on Medicaid Coverage

Medi-Cal applicants who have been waiting for more than 45 days can receive temporary health benefits while officials determine eligibility for the public insurance program, a state Superior Court judge ruled this week.
January 20, 2015

Health Premiums Most Expensive in Rural Areas

In health insurance prices, as in the weather, Alaska and the Sun Belt are extremes. This year Alaska is the most expensive health insurance market for people who do not get coverage through their employers, while Phoenix, Albuquerque, N.M., and Tucson, Ariz., are among the very cheapest.
January 14, 2015

How a Health Insurance Co-Op Collapsed in Iowa

The Affordable Care Act set aside funding for health care co-ops, to enable the organizations to compete in places where there aren’t many insurers. CoOportunity Health was the second largest co-op in the country in terms of membership.
January 8, 2015

As Caregiving Shifts to the Home, Scrutiny Is Lacking

Yolanda Farrell lay mostly paralyzed in a nursing home, unable to feed or dress herself, when her homeless daughter persuaded her to move out.
December 4, 2014

Florida May Get Medicaid Expansion, Just by Calling it Something Else

The plan, called A Healthy Florida Works, offers an alternative to the ACA model while proposing a politically viable path for Florida’s Republican-controlled House of Representatives to extend coverage to more residents.
December 3, 2014

Wellness Programs Under Attack

Do it or else. Increasingly, that’s the approach taken by employers who are offering financial incentives for workers to take part in wellness programs that incorporate screenings that measure blood pressure, cholesterol and body mass index, among other things.
December 2, 2014

ACA Would Likely Unravel If Supreme Court Strikes Federal Exchange Subsidies

Legal scholars say the decision could deal a potentially lethal blow to the law by undermining the government-run insurance marketplaces that are its backbone, as well as the mandate requiring most Americans to carry coverage.
December 2, 2014

Increased Competition Helps Keep Premiums Down in Federal Health Exchange

A surge in health insurer competition appears to be helping restrain premium increases in hundreds of counties next year, with prices dropping in many places where newcomers are offering the least expensive plans, according to a Kaiser Health News analysis of federal premium records.
November 20, 2014

California’s Managed Care Program for Elderly Poor Doesn't Work so Well

Low-income old people are experiencing confusion and frustration after the state tried to move almost 500,000 seniors and disabled people automatically into managed care.
November 20, 2014

Obesity-Counseling Benefit in Medicare Mostly Ignored

Less than 1 percent of the programs 50 million beneficiaries have used the benefit so far. Experts blame the government’s failure to promote the program, rules that limit where and when patients can go for counseling as well as the low fees for providers.
November 17, 2014

Insurance Exchanges Launch with Few Glitches

A Los Angeles furniture store worker who had never had health insurance enrolled in a plan for $75 a month that will cover both him and his son.
November 14, 2014

Multi-State Companies Face Problems with Small Business Exchanges

Small Business Health Options Program, or SHOP, is scheduled to go live Nov. 15. But SHOP plans will be organized by state — posing an additional challenge to small employers with workers who live or work in different states.
November 12, 2014

The Only Red State to Launch Its Own Health Exchange

Idaho will be one of a dozen states, along with Washington, D.C., to run its own online marketplace this year — and the only one whose state government is completely controlled by Republicans.
November 6, 2014

How Much Does That Health Care Procedure Really Cost?

Thanks to a law enacted in October, Massachusetts health insurers have to make all their prices public – in advance.
October 30, 2014

Why Obamacare Is Failing in Mississippi

In the country’s unhealthiest state, the disaster of the Affordable Care Act is a group effort.
October 30, 2014

The Elections Where Soda Is One of the Biggest Issues

Now, the soda industry is going to war in a pair of election battles in San Francisco and Berkeley, two of the most liberal cities in the U.S.
October 28, 2014

Reno Finds Medicaid Expansion Is Easier Said Than Done

Residents of the Nevada city find that it can take two months to get a doctor’s appointment at a local community health center, or an all-day wait.
October 22, 2014

Uninsured Unaware of Obamacare's Enrollment Period and Benefits

Almost nine of 10 uninsured Americans – the group most likely to benefit — don’t know that the law’s second open enrollment period begins Nov. 15, according to a poll released Tuesday.
October 21, 2014

Obamacare Signups Lower in Rural Areas

Missouri sees urban, rural divide in heath care coverage.
October 17, 2014

Poll Reveals Public's Misconceptions About Ebola

A new survey finds the public has a lot to learn about how the Ebola virus is transmitted, which could help explain the growing fears of the disease.
October 16, 2014

California Releases ‘Report Cards’ on Health Insurance Options

This year, the state aggregated claims and electronic medical record data and patient satisfaction surveys.
October 16, 2014

Even with Insurance, Many Still Pay a Lot for Prescriptions

Some patients with health insurance are struggling to pay for prescription drugs for conditions such as cancer, arthritis, multiple sclerosis or HIV/AIDS, as insurers and employers shift more of the cost of high-priced pharmaceuticals to the patients who take them.
October 15, 2014

Many States Boost Medicaid Benefits for Recipients and Providers

With an improving fiscal climate, many states are increasing benefits for Medicaid recipients and paying their providers more.
October 9, 2014

New and Improved HealthCare.Gov Unveiled

Consumers using the federal website when open enrollment begins next month should expect a faster website with a shorter application form and features making it easier to use on mobile devices, Obama administration officials said Wednesday.
October 8, 2014

Medicare Patients Often Pay More at Rural Hospitals

An investigation by the HHS inspector general says beneficiaries getting the treatments at “critical access” hospitals pay between two and six times more than those at other hospitals.
October 7, 2014

Round 2 of Obamacare Enrollment Will Be Shorter and Harder

As states gear up for round two of Obamacare enrollment next month, they have their sights set on people like Miles Alva.
September 30, 2014

Many Rural Hospitals Don't Have to Meet ACA Quality Standards

A quarter of the nation's hospitals are exempt from penalties, quality bonuses and other payment reforms.
September 30, 2014

Obamacare Deadline Hits for Immigrants to Prove Legal Status

Thousands of people in California are facing a Sept. 30 deadline to prove they are in the country legally, as required to receive coverage through insurance exchanges. It's not easy to do.
September 25, 2014

Hospitals in Expansion States See Biggest Savings

Hospitals are projected to save $5.7 billion this year as previously uninsured patients gain coverage through the 2010 health care law, the Department of Health and Human Services said Wednesday.
September 23, 2014

People in the New York Region Less Likely to Die at Home

Is it because the area simply has more hospitals than needed?
September 22, 2014

Why 1 Insurer Controls the Fate of Obamacare Fate in 2 States

Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield totally dominates the insurance marketplace in two surprising states.
September 22, 2014

Medicaid Must Cover Autism Care for Kids, but What About Adults?

It’s getting easier for parents of young children with autism to get insurers to cover a pricey treatment called applied behavioral analysis. Once kids turn 21, however, it’s a different ballgame entirely.
September 17, 2014

State Health Mandates Get Murky

To discourage states from passing mandates that go beyond essential health benefits requirements, the law requires states, not insurers, to cover the cost of mandates passed after 2011 that apply to individual and small group plans sold on or off the state health insurance marketplaces. If a mandate increases a plan’s premium, states will be on the hook for the additional premium cost that’s attributable to the mandate.
September 15, 2014

Study Shows How Obamacare Has Impacted Children's Uninsured Rate

The uninsured rate for kids under age 18 hasn’t budged under the health law, according to a new study, even though they’re subject to the law’s requirement to have insurance just as their parents and older siblings are. Many of those children are likely eligible for coverage under Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program.
September 15, 2014

California Takes the Lead on Autism Coverage

Starting Monday, September 15,thousands of children from low-income families who are on the autism spectrum will be eligible for behavioral therapy under Medi-Cal, the state’s health plan for the poor.
September 10, 2014

Nonprofits Get Millions to Help Boost Obamacare Enrollment

Two Planned Parenthood chapters, two United Way organizations, a food bank association and a Catholic hospital system are among 90 nonprofit groups that will receive a total of $60 million to help people sign up for health insurance, the Department of Health and Human Services announced today.
September 8, 2014

Obamacare Premiums to Drop Slightly in 16 Cities

In preliminary but encouraging news for consumers and taxpayers, insurance filings show that average premiums will decline slightly next year in 16 major cities for a benchmark Obamacare plan.
September 5, 2014

For Emergency Care, Sometimes a Station Wagon Works as Well as an Ambulance

There's nothing like an ambulance when you really need one, but they're expensive, and a lot of people who call an ambulance could be better served with a different, cheaper kind of care.
September 4, 2014

Many States Are Expanding Health Coverage. Maine Is Contracting It.

Gov. Paul LePage’s decision to shrink Medicaid instead of expanding it was a radical departure from a decade-long effort to cover more people in the rural state.
September 4, 2014

U.S. Health Spending Expected to Increase Modestly

National health spending will increase modestly over the next decade, propelled in part by the gradual rebound of the U.S. economy and the growing ranks of Americans who became insured under the health law, government actuaries projected Wednesday.
September 3, 2014

Massachusetts' Victory in Health Costs May Be Short-Lived

Two years ago, Massachusetts set what was considered an ambitious goal: The state would not let that persistent monster, rising health care costs, increase faster than the economy as a whole. Today, the results of the first full year are out and there’s reason to for many to celebrate.
September 2, 2014

Why Some States Are Charging Taxpayers to Pay Health Insurance Companies

States are using taxes to help pay Obamacare's tax on insurers.
August 27, 2014

States Ordered to Cover Autism Services under Medicaid

In July, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced that comprehensive autism services must be covered for children under all state Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program plans, another federal-state program that provide health coverage to lower-income children.
August 18, 2014

Hospitals Reconsider Charity for Uninsured

As more Americans gain insurance under the federal health law, hospitals are rethinking their charity programs, with some scaling back help for those who could have signed up for coverage but didn’t.
August 7, 2014

Many Free Clinics Becoming Medicaid Providers

Obamacare an creates upheaval at free clinics, now that people have insurance options.
August 6, 2014

Medicaid Expansion Is Working in Cleveland

A city hospital created its own Medicaid program for residents.
August 5, 2014

Death Rate in a Region Rises If ER Departments Close

A new study indicates that emergency department closures raise death rates at nearby hospitals.
July 31, 2014

Just 6 States Will Fund Medicaid Pay Raises for Doctors

The other 42 states will let the Medicaid pay rates revert back to their 2012 levels. The pay raise was supposed to allow low-income people enrolling in the expanding insurance program to have access to a physician.
July 31, 2014

California Might Have Bilingual Prescription Labels Soon

Many patients don’t understand the instructions on the label on their prescriptions. The California’s Board of Pharmacy will discuss new regulations that would require pharmacies in California to provide translated labels on prescription drug bottles.
July 29, 2014

Moving Poor Children to Obamacare Exchanges Would Be Very Expensive

A study indicates that moving children from CHIP to ACA Exchange plans would increase costs, sometimes 10-fold.
July 25, 2014

Will Legal Decisions About Obamacare Matter for Midterm Elections?

Political analysts say the new health law court decisions would have only a limited political impact.
July 24, 2014

Medicaid Enrollment Delays in Tennessee Cause Advocacy Groups to Sue

Three groups filed a class-action lawsuit Wednesday accusing Tennessee officials of depriving thousands of people of Medicaid coverage “to score political points.”
July 22, 2014

Are Recertification Rules for Doctors Useful?

Many specialists object to recertification rules they call a waste of time.
July 21, 2014

How Texas Lawmakers Closed Abortion Clinics

Half of Texas abortion clinics will close due to state law.
July 16, 2014

How California Plans to Cut Its Medicaid Backlog

In a letter to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services on Monday, the California Department of Health Care Services said that it had reduced its application backlog to 600,000 by the start of this month.
July 15, 2014

Why Kentucky's Giving Nurse Practitioners More Authority

As more Americans get insurance, there may be shortages of primary care doctors, so states are getting creative.
July 11, 2014

Deadline Nearing for 6 States to Fix Medicaid Backlogs

Tired of waiting for states to reduce their backlogs of Medicaid applications, the Obama administration has given six states until Monday to submit plans to resolve issues that have prevented more than 1 million low-income or disabled people from getting health coverage.
July 8, 2014

How Tennessee Keeps Health Costs Low

In unhealthy eastern Tennessee, limited patient options bring some of the country’s cheapest premiums.
July 7, 2014

Florida Creates a Special Health Plan for the Mentally Ill

The state will shift its Medicaid mental health strategy to coordinate physical and mental health care for those enrolled in Medicaid.
July 2, 2014

New Hampshire's Plan to Subsidize More Employer Health Care Plans

Observers say this represents a "uniquely New Hampshire approach" to health care expansion.
July 1, 2014

Why New Health Insurance Carriers Are Entering the Market

States are seeing new insurers, attracted by the exchanges, offering their policies.
July 1, 2014

Hobby Lobby Ruling 'Doesn't Supercede State Law'

More than half the states have “contraceptive equity” laws on the books that require most employers whose health insurance covers prescription drugs to also cover FDA-approved contraceptives as part of that package.
June 30, 2014

Climate Change Will Kill People

Experts say American medical care needs to be ready for global warming.
June 25, 2014

Ohio's Measles Outbreak Prompts Amish to Get Vaccinated

The largest outbreak of measles in recent U.S. history has spread quickly among the largely unvaccinated Amish communities in the center of the state.
June 25, 2014

Connecticut Health Insurance Decision Could Reduce Coverage for Autism

Advocates worry the state's decision could chip away at hard-won coverage gains for mental health conditions.
June 17, 2014

Supreme Court: Groups Can Sue over Campaign Lies

A group challenging an Ohio election law that makes it a crime to make “false statements” about a candidate’s record during a campaign has standing to challenge the constitutionality of that law, according to today’s unanimous Supreme Court decision.
June 12, 2014

Michigan to Offer Better Medicaid to Enrollees for Getting Healthier

Michigan to offer Medicaid recipients lower premiums and cost sharing if they take "personal responsibility" and do a health risk assessment with their doctor every year and to commit to improve their health.
June 9, 2014

Despite Medicaid Expansion, 1.7 Million Still Waiting for Health-Care Decisions

Some Americans have been stuck in limbo for as long as eight months, according to officials in 15 large states.
June 5, 2014

Medicaid Enrollment Surged in April

Medicaid enrollment surged by more than 1 million people in April, bringing the total growth in the state-federal health insurance program for the poor since September to about 6 million, the Obama administration said Wednesday.
June 4, 2014

It's Very Difficult for Patients to Compare Hospital Prices

The sticker price for the 100 most common treatments and procedures for Medicare inpatients in 2011 varied dramatically among hospitals across the country, and even across towns.
June 3, 2014

Missouri Has a Declining Medicaid Caseload. Is That a Good Thing?

Missouri is seeing a bigger decline in its Medicaid rolls than nearly any other state, a ranking that the administration of Gov. Jay Nixon attributes to people getting jobs. Critics contend the state is just making it harder for people to enroll or renew their coverage.
May 30, 2014

What Should Georgia Do with Those Closed, Rural Hospitals?

Georgia looks to reopen some former hospitals as freestanding emergency departments.
May 21, 2014

California Doctors Are Getting Rich from Medicare

Doctors in the state are among those charging Medicare the most for office visits.
May 16, 2014

Pennsylvania's Medicaid Expansion Won't Be Easy

The state's expansion plan would require 723 new workers.
May 14, 2014

The 'Defined Contribution' Part of Employer-Provided Health Insurance: This Is Where It Gets Complicated

Could employers decide to drop their health plans and just replace them with a “defined contribution” for employees?
May 13, 2014

Insurers and D.C. Council Fight over Health Exchange

Washington, D.C.'s health insurance tax plan triggers a pushback from insurance companies.
May 12, 2014

Mental Health Playing a Bigger Part in Conn. Policing

Cops are now trained in Mental Health 101.
May 12, 2014

Nonexpansion States Strain Health Centers

More than 1 million patients who use federally funded community health centers will remain uninsured because they live in one of 24 states that chose not to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, according to a study released Friday by researchers at George Washington University.
May 8, 2014

What Happens When You Shift Kids Off of Children's Medicaid?

Arizona offers a sneak peak at the costs of shifting kids off of CHIP and putting them in insurance exchanges.
May 6, 2014

Study: The Higher the Insured Rate, the Lower the Mortality Rate

Fewer people died in Massachusetts after the state required people to have health insurance, according to researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health.
May 5, 2014

The Mexican Medical Care Option

Even with Obamacare, many Latinos still seek treatment In Mexico.
May 2, 2014

Obamacare Enrollment Data Released

Obama administration officials on Thursday predicted health insurance premiums would be stable next year despite concerns that not enough young and healthy people signed up through the online insurance exchanges.
April 28, 2014

How Is California Doing So Well Signing Up People for Obamacare?

From zero to 3.3 million Californians have signed up for health insurance. If every state had kept up with California's pace, then national exchange enrollment would have topped 12 million by now.
April 23, 2014

Is There Too Much Consolidation in Health Care?

An Idaho hospital battle is a microcosm of the debate over industry consolidation.
April 18, 2014

Obama Chastises States Not Expanding Medicaid

Enrollment in private health insurance on federal and state marketplaces has surged in recent weeks and now totals 8 million, a feisty President Barack Obama said Thursday.
April 15, 2014

Many More Americans Are Buying Private Health Insurance

The focus on state exchanges and overlooks millions who have bought private health insurance.
April 15, 2014

Why's it so Hard to Find Out if Marketplace Plans Cover Abortion?

Abortion coverage details are very difficult to find on marketplace plans.
April 14, 2014

A Glimpse at State Health Exchange Enrollment

The enrollment experience varied according to states and Families USA brought together five state exchange directors Thursday to talk about what they’ve seen so far.
April 11, 2014

How Minnesota Could Save $966 Million on Alzheimer’s Care

The Alzheimer’s Disease Support Model could help states save millions, according to a new study.
April 11, 2014

Sebelius Steps Down as HHS Secretary

After a five-year tenure that included the flawed rollout of the health care law and stormy relations with Capitol Hill Republicans, Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is resigning, a White House official said late Thursday.
April 9, 2014

Nevada Offers All-Year Health Care Enrollment

Nevada offers a rare bet to state residents: Year-round sales of health insurance plans.
April 9, 2014

The Mentally Ill Mostly Go to Jail, Not Psych Hospitals

American jails house 10 times more mentally ill people than state hospitals.
April 2, 2014

Obama: Enrollment Exceeds 7M; ACA 'Here to Stay'

The Obama administration took a victory lap Tuesday as enrollment through the health law’s exchanges topped 7 million, a goal previously thought untouchable when the website sputtered and crashed as sign-ups began last fall.
April 1, 2014

And for People Still Not Covered Under Obamacare... Community Health Centers

Community health centers may provide services for those who remain uninsured.
April 1, 2014

Primary Care Doctors Are Getting Burnt Out, Cutting Back

The greatest source of frustration for many physicians is working with electronic medical records.
March 31, 2014

Tech Startup Helps People Easily Compare Insurance Plans

One new company offers Californians quick assessments of some possible insurance plans.
March 24, 2014

Connecticut Opens Actual Stores to Sell Obamacare

Connecticut customers rush to retail stores to buy health insurance.
March 19, 2014

How Will Obamacare Succeed or Fail? Only 10 States Matter

Enrollment numbers in 10 states are critical to the administration's efforts to enroll 6 million Americans in new health plans.
March 17, 2014

The Big Information Gap Immigrants Have About Obamacare

Thousands of young California immigrants are eligible for coverage -- though often they don’t know it.
March 6, 2014

States Get Extra Time to Decide on Health Exchanges

The Obama administration on Wednesday released a broad set of regulatory changes to the health law that would give some consumers additional time to stay in plans that do not comply with all its coverage requirements and all consumers more time to enroll in coverage come 2015.
March 5, 2014

Why Did Los Angeles County Stop its Nursing Home Investigations?

Facing a backlog of hundreds of health and safety complaints, it appears county officials told inspectors to cut short nursing home probes.
February 28, 2014

When the Health Exchange Works, States Show Others How It's Done

Connecticut tries to sell its Obamacare success to other states.
February 21, 2014

But How Much Does the Health Care Service Cost?

Colorado's works to create a complete, useful health care price list. It's not an easy task.
February 21, 2014

How the 'Private Option' Medicaid Could Hurt Local Health Centers

It's not just if a state is expanding Medicaid that matters, but how.
February 14, 2014

Libraries Serving as Obamacare Information Hubs

Libraries are serving as Obamacare information hubs.
February 13, 2014

Where Health Care Is Most Expensive in America

The 10 most expensive health insurance markets in the U.S. are marked by a limited number of hospitals and specialists and large numbers of poor and unhealthy people.
February 13, 2014

Florida Will Create a Special Medicaid Plan for Foster Children

Finding roadblocks trying to get foster kids health care, Florida moves to manage a special program for the population.
February 13, 2014

Where Health Care Is Cheap in America

The 10 least expensive health insurance markets in the U.S. are marked by robust competition, salaried doctors and health systems that organize care.
February 13, 2014

How Did Obamacare Enrollment Fare in January?

Nearly 3.3 million Americans have signed up for private health insurance plans since October through the online marketplaces created by the health law, with enrollment continuing to surge through January, an Obama administration report said Wednesday.
February 11, 2014

How the Insurance Marketplace Doesn't Work for Many Gay Couples

Some same-sex couples are being denied family policies on the insurance marketplaces.
February 10, 2014

Arkansas’ Private Medicaid Experiment Could End June 30

The state's unique Medicaid experiment, which is key to Obamacare expansion, could end if it doesn't get GOP support.
February 7, 2014

Chinatown: Where Obamacare Works

Despite problems, the Affordable Care Act thrives in San Francisco's Chinatown.
January 31, 2014

Meet’s Fix-It Guy

Ex-Microsoft executive Kurt DelBene’s brings lists and a whiteboard to the overhaul of the Obamacare website.
January 28, 2014

In Western North Carolina, Getting Health Care Is a Lot More Complicated Than Navigating a Website

Sometimes getting health coverage means getting creative.
November 7, 2013

Some States Also Having Problems with Health Care Exchanges

Oregon's state exchange may be worse than
October 10, 2013

Obamacare Health Exchanges Open with Technical Glitches in Some States

Online marketplaces at the heart of the health law opened for business Tuesday, often haltingly, as Web-based insurance portals were swamped with consumers who were frequently unable to sign up.
October 7, 2013

Obamacare Plan Prices Vary Widely Across the Country

Consumers shopping in the new health insurance marketplaces find the pricing very complicated, while people in some areas of the country have to pay much more for the identical level of coverage than consumers elsewhere.
July 10, 2013

States Use Sports Teams to Inform Public About Health Exchanges

In an effort to get the word out about their new health exchanges, Massachusetts and Colorado are making use of local sports teams.
March 1, 2013

Some States Getting a Head Start on Health Plan Ratings

A handful of states, including Oregon, Maryland, Minnesota and California, are opting to start rating health plans based on quality well before they're required to in 2016 under federal health reform.
February 13, 2013

Illegal Immigrants Most Helped by Emergency Medicaid Program

Federal law generally bars illegal immigrants from being covered by Medicaid, but a little-known part of the state-federal health insurance program for the poor pays about $2 billion a year for emergency treatment for a group of patients comprised mostly of illegal immigrants.
August 28, 2012

Feds Urge Maryland to Think Big on Health Care Cost Control

Federal officials are urging Maryland and its powerful health industry to build on the state's unique hospital rate-setting system to develop sweeping cost controls that could be used as a model for other states.