Tag Archives: income

Reports balance increased spending on dental care with potential savings elsewhere

Photo: Irina Patrascu via Flickr

While states are required by federal law to offer a full range of dental services to children under Medicaid, adult benefits are considered an optional part of the program.

It would cost at least $1.4 billion to expand Medicaid dental programs in the 22 states where options for adults are currently limited or nonexistent, according to a new research brief from the American Dental Association’s Health Policy Institute (HPI). Continue reading

Time to take a look at local efforts to tackle health, poverty

Photo: via photopin (license)More communities are looking for ways to close the health care gap in 2016.

Photo: via photopin (license)More communities are looking for ways to close the health care gap in 2016.

Perhaps 2016 will be the year of the gap – tackling the issue of the working poor who fall between Medicaid and subsidized health insurance on the health care exchanges.

While the Affordable Care Act allowed for the expansion of the Medicaid – the joint federal-state insurance program for the poor – 31 states have broadened the program, while 16 states have not, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. That can leave many of the working poor in some states effectively still uninsured. Continue reading

Study indicates that frailty differs by region, income, race

Photo: Vee via Flickr

Photo: Vee via Flickr

Geography, race and income matter when it comes to frailty, according to a new study from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Women and the poor are more likely to be frail, and older people in southern states more that three times likely to be frail than those in western states. Additionally, blacks and Hispanics were nearly twice as likely to be frail than whites, researchers concluded. Continue reading

Older same-sex couples gain financial protection in SCOTUS decision

Photo: Matt Popovich via Flickr

Photo: Matt Popovich via Flickr

In the wake of last month’s Supreme Court ruling on marriage, same-sex married couples in all 50 states should now qualify for financial protection against impoverishment under Medicaid if one of them goes into a nursing home.

Before the high court’s decision, spousal financial protection rules were unavailable to same-sex couples if their state of residence did not recognize their marriage. With a semi-private room in a nursing home costing $80,000 a year, many couples can easily wipe out all their assets without such protection. Continue reading

Amid turmoil in Baltimore, a story of hidden health care gaps

Images streaming from the recent unrest in Baltimore showed parts of a city in flames, buildings in ruins and turmoil in the streets following the death of 25-year-old Freddie Gray April 19 while in police custody.

Park Avenue Pharmacy in Bolton Hill, Baltimore

Image by Taber Andrew Bain via flickr.

Less visible – perhaps with the exception of a burned and looted CVS – are the scars of limited access to health care in a city with deep pockets of poverty.

A city on the brink

First, a look at the big picture in Baltimore, Maryland’s biggest city with roughly 623,000 residents and glaring disparities in crime rates, income, education, housing – and health.

Continue reading