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Biden administration details new research plan on 'long COVID' illness

The Biden administration announced plans Tuesday to create a national research action plan that could provide answers to public health officials trying to diagnose and treat so-called long COVID-19. ... Read more»

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Court refuses to order Arizona's Medicaid to pay for transgender teen’s surgery

A federal appeals court has refused to order Arizona’s Medicaid program to pay for the sex reassignment surgery of a transgender teen who claimed the state’s failure to do so amounted to sex discrimination. ... Read more»

Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer to retire

Justice Stephen Breyer will be retiring from the Supreme Court at the end of the term, according to Wednesday morning reporting from NBC. ... Read more»

Flags at half-staff Fri & Sat to honor Az officer dead from COVID & former Sen. Harry Reid

Flags will be flown at half-staff on Friday and Saturday to mark the death of a Casa Grande police officer from COVID-19, and for the funeral of former U.S. Senator Harry Reid.... Read more»

Former Senate majority leader Harry Reid dies at 82

Harry Reid, the former majority leader in the U.S. Senate and longtime fixture in Nevada and national politics, died Tuesday at the age of 82 after battling pancreatic cancer in the years since his retirement from the Senate in 2017. ... Read more»

Record number of Americans sign up for ACA health insurance

A record 13.6 million Americans have signed up for health coverage for 2022 on the Affordable Care Act marketplaces, with nearly a month remaining to enroll in most states - with some of the largest increases in states that have not expanded Medicaid under the ACA.... Read more»

Medicare punishes 2,499 hospitals for high readmissions

The Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program - created by the 2010 Affordable Care Act and the federal government’s effort to penalize hospitals for excessive patient readmissions - is ending its first decade with Medicare cutting payments to nearly half the nation’s hospitals.... Read more»

Democrats’ plans to expand Medicare benefits may pinch Advantage plans’ funding

A new television ad, paid for by Better Medicare Alliance, a research and advocacy group for Medicare Advantage plans, doesn’t spell out what cuts congressional lawmakers might be trying to slip past unsuspecting seniors.... Read more»

Obamacare enrollment in Arizona rose by 40,000, with more gains likely

More than 40,000 Arizonans signed up for Affordable Care Act health insurance in the six-month special enrollment period earlier this year, and advocates expect the numbers to keep rising in the enrollment period that opens next month. ... Read more»

Insurance focused on virtual visits? The pros and cons of a new twist in health plans

At the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, people often relied on telemedicine for doctor visits; now, insurers are betting that some patients liked it enough to embrace new types of health coverage that encourages video visits — or outright insists on them.... Read more»

As Democrats bicker over massive spending plan, here’s what’s at stake for Medicaid

Democrats are moving to close the Medicaid coverage gap as they forge a package of new domestic spending that could run as high as $3.5 trillion over 10 years and would significantly enhance other federal health programs, but the cost is raising concerns within the party.... Read more»

FactCheck: An ad’s charge that price haggling would 'swipe $500 billion from Medicare' is incorrect

The 60 Plus Association ran an ad that claimed Medicare drug price negotiations were “swiping” $500 billion from Medicare and going to be used to “cut benefits and no longer pay for lifesaving medicines" - while the $500 billion number is based on facts, everything else is misleading.... Read more»

Why doesn’t Medicare cover services so many seniors need?

“Traditional” Medicare does not cover many benefits used overwhelmingly by its beneficiaries, including most vision, dental and hearing care - and drug coverage is available only by purchasing a separate insurance plan - but Democrats in Congress plan to try to change that.... Read more»

Hospital prices must now be transparent, yet for consumers, they’re still anyone’s guess

Under a Trump administration price transparency rule that took effect at the start of this year, hospitals are required to post a range of actual prices, but some hospitals bury the data deep on their websites or have not included all the categories of prices required.... Read more»

At Texas border, pandemic’s high toll lays bare gaps in health and insurance

In Texas border communities, not only did people die of COVID-19 at significantly higher rates than elsewhere, but people under age 65 were also more likely to die, highlighting higher-than-normal prevalence of underlying health issues combined with high uninsurance rates and flagging access to care for residents.... Read more»

Biden quietly transforms Medicaid safety net

The Biden administration is quietly engineering a series of expansions to Medicaid that may bolster protections for millions of low-income Americans and bring more people into the program, drawing criticism from Republicans, some of whom accuse the administration of trampling states’ rights.... Read more»

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