KHN’s ‘What the Well being?’: It’s Scandal Week

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President Donald Trump lastly launched his promised govt order geared toward bringing down drug prices. It components in worldwide costs to find out what Medicare pays for prescriptions. However the order has no pressure of legislation except the Division of Well being and Human Companies points rules, which may take months and even years if drug corporations problem the trouble in courtroom, as they’ve promised.

In the meantime, a number of companies inside HHS are engulfed in scandal. The White Home-installed HHS spokesperson took medical depart after a spate of tales about how he tried to intrude with the work of profession scientists relating to the COVID-19 pandemic. The top of the Medicare and Medicaid packages spent hundreds of thousands of taxpayer {dollars} to burnish her private picture, in line with Democratic congressional investigators. And HHS Secretary Alex Azar apparently overruled the Meals and Drug Administration over efforts to control a category of COVID diagnostic exams.

This week’s panelists are Julie Rovner of KHN, Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico, Tami Luhby of CNN and Sarah Karlin-Smith of the Pink Sheet.

Among the many different takeaways from this week’s podcast:

Trump’s feedback Wednesday contradicting testimony by Dr. Robert Redfield, head of the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention, in regards to the significance of masks and the timing of a coronavirus vaccine will not be the primary time he has disputed statements by his scientific and medical advisers. However confusion created by the differing statements may erode belief in a vaccine growth course of that has already been extremely politicized.
Drugmakers oppose any efforts to restrict the costs of Medicare medication and vow to battle the trouble in courtroom and politically. They might have some allies within the Senate, the place Republicans will not be eager on the thought of endorsing value controls.
Though the president regularly speaks about his efforts to curb excessive prescription drug prices, he has not made a lot headway in serving to customers. Nonetheless, the problem has nice political attraction, and he has been capable of hold the warmth on the pharmaceutical business.
It’s been a traumatic week on the Division of Well being and Human Companies. The top of the communications workforce, Michael Caputo, has taken medical depart after acknowledging that he and his aides tried to affect research revealed within the CDC’s journal after which internet hosting a web based occasion through which he alleged with none proof that authorities scientists have been working to undermine the administration. Additionally, the pinnacle of the Facilities for Medicare & Medicaid Companies, Seema Verma, was criticized in a congressional report for spending hundreds of thousands to rent consultants to assist increase her public profile.
Knowledge reported by the Census Bureau this week exhibits that the variety of uninsured within the U.S. grew by almost 1,000,000 folks in 2019. That got here even because the variety of employees rose by greater than 2 million and median family revenue elevated. The numbers are primarily based on 2019, earlier than the coronavirus pandemic.

Plus, for further credit score, the panelists advocate their favourite well being coverage tales of the week they suppose it is best to learn too:

Julie Rovner: KHN’s “Lack of Antigen Take a look at Reporting Leaves Nation ‘Blind to the Pandemic,” by Rachana Pradhan, Lauren Weber and Hannah Recht

Alice Miranda Ollstein: Politico’s “Harvest of Disgrace: Farmworkers Face Coronavirus Catastrophe,” by Helena Bottemiller Evich, Ximena Bustillo and Liz Crampton

Tami Luhby: The Washington Put up’s “Medicaid Rolls Swell Amid the Pandemic’s Historic Job Losses, Straining State Budgets,” by Amy Goldstein

Sarah Karlin-Smith: KHN’s “Hospitals, Nursing Houses Fail to Separate COVID Sufferers, Placing Others at Threat,” by Christina Jewett

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