No Cash, No Heart. Transplant Centers Require Proof Of Payment.

The case of a Michigan woman who was told to fundraise $10,000 for a heart transplant sparked viral outrage, but experts say such “wallet biopsies” are common. A California mother has raised nearly $24,000 in a GoFundMe campaign to pay for costs related to her adult daughter's second kidney transplant.

Must-Reads Of The Week On Health Care

Executive editor Damon Darlin takes a spin as host of "The Friday Breeze," whirling through a week of health care news so you don't have to.

Even When Not In Rome, Eat A Mediterranean Diet To Cut Heart Disease Risk

New research not only confirms the heart health benefits of a Mediterranean-style diet, but also tracks these benefits over the long term.

More Than Half Of California Nursing Homes Balk At Stricter Staffing Rules

Patient advocates say the state’s new staffing regulations are a good start toward better protecting the frail, but the nursing home industry contends they’re too burdensome.

Navigating Aging

Seniors Steamed Over Cuts To SilverSneakers Fitness Program

UnitedHealthcare has put the skids on offering SilverSneakers, the nation’s fitness program for seniors, as part of its benefit packages. A look at why and some alternatives.

With Hospitalization Losing Favor, Judges Order Outpatient Mental Health Treatment

Nearly every state in the country allows courts to force people with severe mental illnesses into treatment against their will. But critics argue these controversial intervention programs fail to address underlying problems in behavioral health services. In California, only one-third of counties have such programs, but they account for nearly two-thirds of the state's population.

Podcast: KHN’s ‘What The Health?’ Is Health Spending The Next Big Political Issue?

Diabetics dying because they can’t afford insulin. Organ transplant patients undergoing “wallet biopsies” to get on waiting lists. Are out-of-pocket costs going to dominate the health discussion in the next election? Margot Sanger-Katz of The New York Times, Joanne Kenen of Politico and Rebecca Adams of CQ Roll Call join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss this as well as new Trump administration rules giving states the ability to make major changes to the Affordable Care Act. Also, lame-duck lawmakers in Wisconsin and Michigan try to cement health changes before Democrats take over.

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Picture of Health

The Untold Toll Of The Flu

California’s Department of Public Health says the flu killed 329 people under age 65 in the last flu season, from October 2017 to August 2018.

But that is likely only a small fraction of the total deaths in the nation’s most populous state because the department didn’t count the hundreds of deaths of people 65 and older. The state figure could account for just 1 in 10 flu deaths.

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