CMS chief Chiquita Brooks-LaSure says the agency reserves its power to quickly institute new regulations for “absolute emergencies.” On staffing, nursing home residents might need to wait years to see any real change.
Private and public employers are increasingly using the government’s Medicare Advantage program as an alternative to their existing retiree health plan and traditional Medicare coverage. As a result, the federal government is paying the “overwhelming majority” of medical costs, according to an industry analyst.
The pandemic has shown that loosening the strict regulations on distributing methadone helps people recovering from addiction stay in treatment. But clinics with a financial stake in keeping the status quo don’t want to make permanent changes.
President Joe Biden spent a large portion of his first State of the Union address talking about foreign affairs, but he also spent time on an array of health topics, including mental health, nursing home regulation, and toxic burn pits. Also this week, the administration unveiled a strategy to address the covid pandemic going forward. Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico, Amy Goldstein of The Washington Post, and Sarah Karlin-Smith of the Pink Sheet join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more. Plus, for extra credit, the panelists recommend their favorite health policy stories of the week they think you should read, too.
Gov. Gavin Newsom has launched several initiatives to cut rising drug prices, but the savings haven’t been as monumental as he promised. And his plan to have California make its own generic drugs hasn’t gotten off the ground.
Spun off from the ailing but not-quite-dead Build Back Better legislation, a popular proposal to cap out-of-pocket insulin costs at $35 a month faces tough political realities that could kill it.
Kennedy Stonum, a 17-year-old high school junior, resisted getting vaccinated against covid-19, as did 20-year-old Tyler Gilreath, whose mother had nagged him for months to get the shots. Both died.