Latest California Healthline Stories
In this episode of KHN’s “What the Health?” Julie Rovner of Kaiser Health News, Mary Agnes Carey of Kaiser Health News, Margot Sanger-Katz of The New York Times and Alice Ollstein of Politico talk about the latest court challenge to the Affordable Care Act, nomination hearings for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and news from the reproductive health front. Plus, Rovner interviews Chad Terhune about the latest KHN/NPR “Bill of the Month” installment.
Two-thirds of Americans worry about unexpectedly large bills from doctors, hospitals or other medical providers, a poll shows. Four in 10 have received one in the past year.
The Trump administration’s plan to expand the use of cheap but skimpy short-term health plans will not fall on fertile soil in California, where lawmakers are pushing legislation to ban such policies.
In this episode of KHN’s “What the Health?” Julie Rovner of Kaiser Health News, Anna Edney of Bloomberg News, Alice Ollstein of Talking Points Memo and Rebecca Adams of CQ Roll Call talk about health care’s emergence as a possible voting issue in the coming midterm elections. Plus, Rovner interviews KHN’s Emmarie Huetteman about July’s “Bill of the Month”: a transgender woman’s “bait-and-switch” $92,000 surgical bill.
Many of the GOP-led states seeking to overturn the Affordable Care Act could end up jeopardizing the health of their own residents, who suffer from preexisting conditions at rates higher than the national average. The ACA requires insurers to cover people with histories of illness and not charge them more for it. If the law is overturned, that protection could be lost, as California Healthline reporter Harriet Rowan explains on “The VICE Guide to Right Now” podcast.
A coalition of Republican states has launched a legal challenge to the Affordable Care Act, including provisions requiring insurers to offer coverage to people with preexisting conditions without raising rates. An analysis shows that some of these states have the highest proportion of such residents.
Other readers ask what can be done to challenge unexpected medical bills — whether the result of an emergency room visit or after a change in prescription drug coverage.
Despite a decision by the Trump administration to ask a court to nullify the portion of the health law guaranteeing coverage to the sick, the Kaiser Family Foundation poll finds most people want insurers to be required to offer coverage and not charge more.
Peter Lee says the court challenge will take time and California will have a chance to pass its own protections in the interim. However, the decision by Congress to eliminate the tax penalty on people who choose not to buy insurance will weigh on 2019 premiums, Lee said. Recent projections by the exchange show an average 11 percent rate hike in 2019, along with a 12 percent drop in enrollment.
Xavier Becerra, who is leading an effort by at least 15 states to protect the law, said the Trump Administration’s latest efforts to dismantle it endangers coverage for millions of Americans.