KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: On Government Spending, Congress Decides Not to Decide

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Congress is meant to finish its annual appropriations payments earlier than the beginning of the fiscal yr on Oct. 1. However it not often does, and this yr is not any totally different, as lawmakers scramble to go a short-term funding invoice to allow them to delay closing choices till at the very least December.

In the meantime, with an eye fixed to the midterms, Home Republicans put out a “Dedication to America,” which incorporates solely the vaguest guarantees associated to well being care. It’s one more demonstration that the one factor in well being care that unifies Republicans is their opposition to Democrats’ well being insurance policies. It’s notable that this newest Republican plan does not counsel repealing the Inexpensive Care Act.

This week’s panelists are Julie Rovner of KHN, Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico, Rachel Cohrs of Stat, and Victoria Knight of Axios.

Among the many takeaways from this week’s episode:

  • The short-term funding invoice to maintain the federal government open contains the five-year reauthorization of the FDA’s consumer charges, that are charged to drugmakers and assist pay the salaries of many FDA workers. Democrats had hoped so as to add provisions to that measure that will create laws on dietary dietary supplements, cosmetics, and lab checks. The present authorization runs out Oct. 1, and Republicans insisted they might assist solely a clear invoice that didn’t have new authorities directives.
  • That authorities funding invoice additionally is not going to embody President Joe Biden’s request for $20 billion to assist pay for extra covid-19 and monkeypox vaccines and testing. Democrats mentioned they wished to increase these packages, however Republicans balked and mentioned the administration nonetheless has not accounted for all of the earlier appropriations.
  • Biden’s touch upon “60 Minutes” suggesting that the covid pandemic “is over” harm administration efforts to influence Congress to go the additional covid funding.
  • Biden took a victory lap this week and touted successes on administration priorities for Medicare. Amongst them, he mentioned, was a discount in subsequent yr’s Half B premium, which typically covers beneficiaries’ outpatient bills. However that premium went down, primarily as a result of Medicare charged an excessive amount of in 2022.
  • Medicare premiums this yr noticed a dramatic enhance as a result of officers anticipated that the federal well being program would see larger prices related to the usage of Aduhelm, an costly medicine for some Alzheimer’s sufferers that acquired tentative approval in 2021 by the FDA. Medicare officers later mentioned they might cowl the drug just for sufferers who additionally enrolled in a scientific trial, and the expectations to be used of the drug plummeted.
  • Republican Home members’ proposed agenda pledged to reverse the Democrats’ choice this yr to permit Medicare to barter some drug costs. Though Democrats mentioned the supply would assist drive down prices, Republicans mentioned they don’t like the federal government interfering within the personal market and worry that the measure would hamper innovation.

Additionally this week, Rovner interviews filmmaker Cynthia Lowen, whose new documentary, “Battleground,” explores how anti-abortion forces performed the lengthy sport to overturn Roe.

Plus, for additional credit score, the panelists suggest their favourite well being coverage tales of the week they suppose you need to learn, too:

Julie Rovner: KHN’s “Britain’s Laborious Classes From Handing Elder Care Over to Personal Fairness,” by Christine Spolar

Alice Miranda Ollstein: KHN’s “Embedded Bias: How Medical Data Sow Discrimination,” by Darius Tahir

Rachel Cohrs: The New York Instances’ “Arbitration Has Come to Senior Dwelling. You Don’t Must Signal Up,” by Paula Span

Victoria Knight: Forbes’ “Mark Cuban Contemplating Leaving Shark Tank as He Bets His Legacy on Low-Price Medication,” by Jemima McEvoy 

Additionally talked about on this week’s episode:

To listen to all our podcasts, click on right here.

And subscribe to KHN’s What the Well being? on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Pocket Casts, or wherever you take heed to podcasts.

This story was produced by KHN (Kaiser Well being Information), a nationwide newsroom that produces in-depth journalism about well being points. Along with Coverage Evaluation and Polling, KHN is without doubt one of the three main working packages at KFF (Kaiser Household Basis). KFF is an endowed nonprofit group offering data on well being points to the nation.

KHN (Kaiser Well being Information) is a nationwide newsroom that produces in-depth journalism about well being points. Along with Coverage Evaluation and Polling, KHN is without doubt one of the three main working packages at KFF (Kaiser Household Basis). KFF is an endowed nonprofit group offering data on well being points to the nation.

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