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COVID-19

Is It Time to Change the Definition of ‘Fully Vaccinated’?

Experts weigh in as the federal government urges everyone to get boosted amid concerns over omicron, a new covid variant.

A Title Fight Pits Physician Assistants Against Doctors

Physician assistants are pushing to be renamed “physician associates,” complaining their title is belittling and doesn’t convey what they do. “We don’t assist,” they insist. Doctors’ groups fear there’s more than just a name in play.

A Tale of Two Medicaid Expansions: Oklahoma Jumps In, While Missouri Lags

Voters in Missouri and Oklahoma approved Medicaid expansion to begin in 2021. But while Oklahoma has enrolled over 200,000 people so far, Missouri has enrolled fewer than 20,000. Why are two such similar states handling the public insurance rollout so differently?

Asking Never Hurts

New California Law Eases Aid-in-Dying Process

Nearly 2,000 terminally ill Californians have used a 2015 law to end their lives with a doctor’s assistance. A revision of the law will make it easier to do so.

Podcast

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Roe v. Wade on the Rocks

A Supreme Court majority appears ready to overturn nearly 50 years of abortion rights, at least judging by the latest round of oral arguments before the justices. And a new covid variant, omicron, gains attention as it spreads around the world. Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico, Sarah Karlin-Smith of the Pink Sheet and Shefali Luthra of The 19th join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more. Also this week, Rovner interviews Blake Farmer of Nashville Public Radio about the latest KHN-NPR “Bill of the Month” episode.

As Climate Worsens, Environmentalists Grapple With the Mental Toll of Activism

After her son's death by suicide, a mother promotes mental health for environmentalists. It's part of a larger push to address the burnout and psychological stress that can affect activists.

COVID-19

Hospitals Refused to Give Patients Ivermectin. Lockdowns and Political Pressure Followed.

Hospitals in Montana and Idaho reported threats and harassment from public officials and family members of patients who were denied treatment with a drug not authorized to treat covid-19.

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Special Coverage

Bill of the Month

Stranded by the Pandemic, He Had Only Travel Insurance. It Left Him With a $38,000 Bill.

Although it’s possible to buy travel insurance that provides some health coverage, the devil is in the fine print. Obama-era laws that prevent refusal of payment for preexisting conditions don’t apply to travel insurance.

Postcard From Southern California

Etching the Pain of Covid Into the Flesh of Survivors

Memorial tattoos have grown more popular in recent years. Since parlors reopened after the lockdown, inkers have found that many people are eager to memorialize relatives and friends lost to covid.

COVID-19

Read our latest coverage of the coronavirus outbreak.

Look Up Your California Hospital

Is it being penalized by Medicare?

California Plans for a Post-Roe World as Abortion Access Shrinks Elsewhere

While other states dramatically restrict abortion and the conservative-leaning U.S. Supreme Court weighs Roe v. Wade, California is preparing to absorb the country’s abortion patients.

Western Boom Cities See Spike in Harmful Ozone

Vehicle emissions, oil and gas drilling and climate change have combined to create more days with unhealthy levels of the colorless, odorless gas from Denver to Phoenix.

Labs With No One to Run Them

Why public health workers are fleeing the field.

baby laying on floor with diaper

Spotlight

Illuminating the newsmakers and behind-the-scenes players who shape health care in California.

Medi-Cal Makeover

Will the state's massive transformation of the program work?

Picture of Health

‘Not Quite on Board’: Parents Proving a Tough Sell on Covid Vax for Teens

chart of California teen vaccination rates

California offers a lens on the challenges officials face in persuading parents to embrace covid shots for young children. While the state has a strong showing in overall vaccination rates, just 59% of kids 12 to 17 — eligible for a shot since May — are fully vaccinated.

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