Health & Human Services

Building emergency housing to meet the unique needs of older adults

A silver tsunami of older adults experiencing homelessness is starting to crash across the U.S. Here’s how one state is trying to soften the blow.

Real-world experiments in messaging show that getting low-income people the help they need is more effective when stigma is reduced

COMMENTARY | The stigma around poverty and government benefits can make those initiatives less effective.

Who gets to decide when you die? States consider medical aid in dying

More than a dozen states introduced bills to legalize the practice in 2023, which observers say can improve end-of-life systems and processes for families and health care providers.

Rethinking engagement to support a rapidly growing older adult population

COMMENTARY | Having a reliable, evidence-based planning process can significantly impact how state governments address the immediate needs of their aging residents while planning for the future.

Why a government shutdown is complex for state and local governments

It will impact welfare, food stamps, housing and infrastructure, among other things. But planning for a shutdown is difficult for a myriad of reasons.

Connect with state & local government leaders

What if we had fully funded safety net programs?

With 100% participation rates in fully funded social services, poverty nationwide would decrease by nearly a third and 4.8 million kids would be lifted out of poverty, according to a new study from the Urban Institute.

The government has a controversial idea to track mental health crisis calls

The national 988 hotline may start pinpointing callers, a move opponents say could lead to forced intervention and violate caller trust.

7% of the United States Is a ‘Play Desert’

COMMENTARY | Many of the counties lacking access to play areas were clustered in the Southeast and Southwest, and were most common in rural and suburban areas throughout the country.

AGs Urge Action on Households' Invisible Plastic Waste

In a letter, 17 Democratic state attorneys general called on the federal government to address "microfibers," the tiny bits of plastic most clothing sheds in washing machines.

More Than 72,000 Lose Medicaid Coverage in Arkansas

Thousands of children lost coverage in the state's effort to update enrollment—a process taking place nationwide as states review the eligibility of millions of Medicaid enrollees following the public health emergency.

Three Ways States Can Strengthen Home Visiting

COMMENTARY | The approach can address the developmental effects of the pandemic on toddlers.

How States Are Evaluating Medicaid Eligibility for Millions

States have 14 months to reexamine the eligibility of the roughly 93 million people on Medicaid. The approaches and timelines for review vary widely state by state.

Schools Find Power in Numbers

Across the country, school districts are joining together to negotiate lower premiums for insurance, goods and services.

What Will Congress Do About SNAP Benefits?

Some want to see an increase in food stamps to account for rising food prices. Others want to tighten work requirements. A compromise is certain as the two sides work toward a must-pass farm bill.

Ohio Gov. DeWine Calls for Stricter Regulations on Railways after East Palestine Derailment

“We should know when we have trains carrying hazardous material that are going to the state of Ohio.”

EPA Announces $2B to Fight Forever Chemicals

The funds are part of a multiyear program to address per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances that contaminate drinking water.

States Scramble to Replace Ripped-Off SNAP Benefits

Food stamp cards don’t have the technological or consumer protections of credit and debit cards.

White House Launches New Push to Help States Remove Lead Pipes That Carry Drinking Water

Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin will be part of the Lead Service Replacement Accelerators program.

America’s Massive Gap Providing Mental Health Services

Counties are pushing Congress to help fix the problem, which is especially bad in rural communities. But whether lawmakers will do so as part of upcoming budget legislation is unclear.