Before the new coronavirus pandemic, expanding health insurance was a hot topic in the presidential campaign. States were considering a wide range of health coverage policies, including Medicaid expansion, Medicaid block grants, public options, new subsidies and coverage of immigrants.
Much of the state policymaking has been on hold or is phasing in more slowly as the nation’s health system focuses on COVID-19. States are facing enormous financial stresses due both to the pandemic and the subseqent economic crisis. Continue reading
Photo: Deborah Crowe
When we first learned of widespread incidence and deaths from COVID-19 in a Seattle-area nursing home, many in the aging and health care fields already knew what was ahead. Since early March, Missouri, California, Texas, New York, Florida, Pennsylvania and nearly every other state have reported cases, More than 5,500 nursing home residents had died from coronavirus-related conditions as of April 15.
The real number undoubtedly is higher, since the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services only recently announced new regulatory requirements to report cases of COVID-19 directly to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Many deaths early in the pandemic likely were attributed to age-related complications from flu, pneumonia, or pre-existing heart and breathing problems. So how are states helping to protect their most vulnerable residents? Continue reading
Overall, across America, about 15% of children and one-third of adults have gone longer than a year without a dental visit, federal data show.
But rates of children and adults getting oral health services, and factors that can represent barriers to access – including provider shortages and the cost of care – vary from state to state.
Since the Supreme Court ruling in 2012, states have been warring over whether or not to expand Medicaid.
Now, some states want to pursue a “partial” expansion – under the same generous federal funding rules. So far, no state has been able to do this – but they are trying. Continue reading
The American Telemedicine Association (ATA), a leading trade group for telehealth providers and advocates, this week released its first report since 2017 that tracks state policies on telehealth.
Telehealth adoption is growing, and more states are embracing policies that improve coverage and reimbursement for telehealth services, according to the report. Lack of reimbursement mechanisms has been one of the biggest barriers to telehealth adoption. Continue reading
Oral health can offer useful insights into a state’s livability.
That is a key message contained in WalletHub’s new report card: 2019’s States With the Best & Worst Dental Health.
This is the third year that the personal finance website has delved into dental care, crunching data from federal and nonprofit sources to come up with its rankings. Continue reading