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COVID-related Medicaid coverage extended – for now – for 500,000 Arizonans

Federal officials on Tuesday extended the emergency Medicaid authorization for another 90 days - a lifeline to as many as 500,000 Arizonans - just days before they were in danger of losing coverage they got under the COVID-19 public health emergency. ... Read more»

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The Tucson agenda

Sahuarita eyes pecan farm wells to secure water future, Flowing Wells staff could see 5% raises

Sahuarita, which doesn't have its own municipal water utility, wants to control its hydrated future and is taking some interesting steps to reach that promised land.... Read more»

Legisladores de Arizona consideran expandir cobertura Medicaid para la atención posparto

Los defensores están presionando a los legisladores de Arizona para que amplíen la cobertura de Medicaid para las mujeres después de dar a luz, para ayudar a mejorar los resultados de salud materna y combatir el aumento de las muertes relacionadas con el embarazo.... Read more»

Arizona lawmakers consider Medicaid expansion for postpartum care

Advocates are pushing Arizona lawmakers to expand Medicaid coverage for women after they give birth, to help improve maternal health outcomes and combat rising pregnancy-related deaths. ... Read more»

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»

Unsafe housing jeopardizes success of community living for chronically mentally ill

In recent years, advocates have adopted the mantra “housing is health care,” saying that a place to live is one of the most important indicators of success for a person with serious mental illness - but for many, that means an unregulated, unlicensed board and care facility.... Read more»

Crisis in mental health care: A place that should know better

Arnold v. Sarn -a class action lawsuit that called for services for people with serious mental illness- ended in 2014 with an agreement that largely replaced “shall” with “may,” encouraging the system to try its best. Now Charles “Chick” Arnold, the lead plaintiff, says the agreement should have been more aggressive. ... Read more»

Affordable Care Act sign-ups continued surge in Arizona, U.S. in April

Health care coverage in Arizona under the Affordable Care Act is at its highest level in three years, as enrollment continued to climb in April during a special open enrollment period, according to the latest government data. ... Read more»

Arizona gets grades from failing to ‘OK-ish’ for anti-tobacco efforts

The American Lung Association’s annual “State of Tobacco Control” report for 2021 gave Arizona a failing grade in three of five policies it looks at. Despite the poor grades, most states were doing well in the fight against smoking – until recently, when electronic cigarettes entered the market.... Read more»

Census: Number of Arizonans without health insurance rose again in 2019

The number of Arizonans without health insurance jumped to more than 800,000 last year, the third consecutive year of increases for the state, according to the latest data from the Census Bureau.... Read more»

State taking steps to reopen economy, but reviving it could take years

As businesses shuttered by COVID-19 and resulting high unemployment have led to a collapse in sales and income tax revenues, state and local governments may be forced to slash budgets. That, in turn, could slow the overall recovery, economists say, with fewer workers and services pumping money back into the economy.... Read more»

Ahead of ‘public charge’ change, advocates struggle to keep Hispanic families enrolled in benefits

Advocates nationwide have been sounding the alarm over a Trump administration change to the so-called “public charge” rule – guidelines used to determine whether immigrants seeking legal status are likely to be a burden on the country’s resources. The update allows immigration officers to consider applicants’ use of certain public benefits, including Medicaid, in deciding to grant green cards, visas and changes in residency.... Read more»

Sick & alone: Jailing the mentally ill in Arizona

Cochise County has joined hundreds of other small counties innovating ways to keep people with serious mental illness out of their jails. But it comes too late for Adrian Perez, who has spent the past 13 years cycling in and out of jail, and solitary confinement, which only makes him sicker.... Read more»

'Deaths of despair' grew slowly in Arizona, but still higher than U.S.

Deaths from drug overdoses, alcohol and suicide have grown more slowly in Arizona than in the nation as whole since 2005, but death rates in the state still exceed the nation in every category, according to a recent national survey.... Read more»

What the Devil won't tell you

Another 'presto, change-o' state tax on local government explained

When the state of Arizona runs into budget troubles, it rolls things downhill and makes counties pay for them. These are tax increases magically imposed by the state with fast, tricky hands. This is a column about the politics of who pays, who doesn't and who looks good doing it.... Read more»

Caught between DACA and ACA, Dreamer’s hopes for kidney transplant dim

Immigration status is not supposed to impact transplant eligibility, but insurance coverage and socioeconomic status do.... Read more»

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