States Could Lead the Way on Health Care Reform
State efforts to expand health care coverage and reduce costs could spur federal action on health care reform, the AP/Houston Chronicle reports. According to the AP/Chronicle, states are "stepping into a void created by a lack of federal action on health care reform."
Massachusetts, Vermont and Maine recently have enacted universal health coverage plans, and California and Illinois also are considering proposals.
According to Kathleen Nolan, division director of health for the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices, Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell's (D) plan, which would allow some nonphysician health care professionals to provide basic services, is among the most "comprehensive, holistic" proposals (Raffaele, AP/Houston Chronicle, 4/1).
In the third report in a weekly series on health care reform, NPR's "Morning Edition" on Monday examined Massachusetts' universal coverage law, which will require all state residents to obtain health insurance by July 1.
The segment includes comments from small-business owners in the state (Knox, "Morning Edition," NPR, 4/2). Audio and a partial transcript of the segment are available online.
Audio and a transcript of an NPR interview with Jonathan Gruber, a health economist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a board member of the Commonwealth Health Insurance Connector, also are available online (Knox, NPR.org, 3/30).