"Off all the forms of inequality, injustice in health care is the most shocking and inhumane." Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.
In that context, I begin by reminding that the health reform repeal vote is scheduled for this week. A new poll shows Americans are evenly split on reform. Expect to hear a lot of negatives, but also a lot of positives from Democrats who look forward to explaining all the good the new law is already doing. Expect the House GOP majority to vote for repeal -- but that will then die in the Senate as the GOP tries -- probably with some more success -- to repeal particular sections of the bill. For example, there are those in the GOP who want to help the insurance industry even more by eliminating the requirement that 80 or 85 percent of premium dollars are spent on health care -- one of the few cost-saving measures in the law. Expect this to go on for a good long time.
Meanwhile, implementation proceeds, with the next step being the identification of the essential benefits package - the things that all insurers who want to participate in the Exchanges will have to cover in their policies.
Does health reform affect jobs? Positively or negatively? The experts are split, it seems.
California Blue Shield refuses to delay rate hikes, as requested by the new Insurance Commissioner, who simply asked for time to get up to speed since he just took office.
Lots of talk about mental health reform in light of the Tucson shooting. Guiliani says the shooter was crying out for help. Why does it take a crisis for us to focus on mental health? We need to find ways to identify those in need sooner, say others.
When budget cuts mean losing the school nurse, what does that mean for kids with chronic illnesses who need meds and other attention during the school day?
Do something today that you think MLK would be proud of. We can all be better. Jennifer