Author Archive

Phil Galewitz

Health & Human Services

Stopping the Churn: Why Some States Want to Guarantee Medicaid Coverage From Birth to Age 6

Oregon has become the first state to allow kids to stay in the government health care program from birth to age 6, no matter if their household income changes. California, Washington, and New Mexico are pursuing similar policies.

Health & Human Services

States Have Yet to Spend Hundreds of Millions of Federal Dollars to Tackle Covid Health Disparities

A year ago, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention awarded states and local health departments $2.25 billion to help people of color and other populations at higher risk from Covid. But a KHN review shows public health agencies across the country have been slow to spend it.

Health & Human Services

Biden Quietly Transforms Medicaid Safety Net

President Joe Biden has considered expanding Medicaid eligibility to new mothers, inmates and undocumented immigrants and adding services such as food and housing.

Health & Human Services

Vermont Is 1st State to Give Minority Residents Vaccine Priority

Covid cases have disproportionately affected the state's Black residents, so officials are moving them to the front of the line for vaccination before the state expands eligibility to all.

Health & Human Services

In America, Covid Vaccine Eligibility Is a ‘Crazy Quilt’ of State Rules

Across the country, a mishmash of rules to qualify for the Covid-19 vaccine is creating difficulties for people seeking the shots.

Health & Human Services

In Alabama, South Carolina and Louisiana, CVS Vaccine Appointments Go Unfilled

“We know we have work to do to engage with the community to get the word out about the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine,” says one public health expert.

Health & Human Services

As Biden Gets Sworn In, White House Will Get Scrubbed Down

The executive mansion will get a deep clean after two COVID-19 outbreaks this fall led to President Donald Trump and members of his staff and family becoming infected.

Health & Human Services

Farmworkers, Firefighters and Flight Attendants Jockey for Vaccine Priority

Everyone — from toilet paper manufacturers to patient advocates — is lobbying state advisory boards, arguing their members are essential, vulnerable or both — and, thus, most deserving of an early vaccine

Health & Human Services

As Long Waits for Results Render Covid Tests ‘Useless,’ States Seek Workarounds

Montana is switching from using one of the nation's largest diagnostic testing companies to processing test results in Montana State University's lab, as well as contracting with a different private laboratory.

Health & Human Services

As Covid Testing Soars, Wait Times For Results Jump To A Week—Or More

People going to coronavirus testing sites are finding it often takes a week or more to get results back. That means patients don't have the information they need to change their behaviors.

Health & Human Services

Covid Pandemic Jeopardizes Vote On Oklahoma Medicaid Expansion

Advocates are concerned that turnout for the summer primary election could be hampered by fears of contracting Covid-19 at voting stations and by Republican Gov. Kevin Stitt’s about-face on the issue.

Health & Human Services

Experts Question Whether Dental Offices Are Reopening Too Fast

Providers and patients alike are eager for dental services to resume. But experts worry about the risks of Covid-19.


Furor Erupts: Billions Going To Hospitals Based On Medicare Billings, Not COVID-19

The Trump administration confirmed Friday it would give hospitals and doctors coronavirus bailout money according to their historical share of revenue from the Medicare program for seniors—not according to their caseload burden.

Health & Human Services

Retiree-Rich Palm Beach County Leads Florida In COVID-19 Deaths

Three factors contribute to the county's high mortality rate: a large elder population, lack of available testing, and frequent travel among residents and visitors to and from the New York metro area, the national epicenter of the outbreak.


Under Pressure, Florida Governor Finally Orders Residents To Stay Home

Florida joins more than 30 other states and the District of Columbia in moves that have similarly restricted residents and businesses. Gov. Ron DeSantis’ decision came as Texas and Pennsylvania took similar action.

Health & Human Services

Efforts To Move The Needle On Flu Shot Rates Get Stuck

The flat immunization rates worry public health officials who say the vaccine is the best weapon to prevent the flu.

Health & Human Services

The Startlingly High Cost Of The ‘Free’ Flu Shot

Although many consumers pay nothing out of pocket for flu shots, insurers foot the bill. And those prices vary dramatically.

Health & Human Services

Tenn. Block Grant Experiment Would Boost Federal Funding, State Medicaid Chief Says

Conservatives have pursued Medicaid block grants for decades to give states more power over the program.

Health & Human Services

To Save Money, American Patients And Surgeons Meet In Cancun

The patient is from Mississippi. The surgeon is from Wisconsin. They meet in a Mexican resort for knee replacement surgery. Because the care costs so much less than in the U.S, the patient’s health plan pays her $5,000.

Health & Human Services

Trump Has Blessed States’ Exploration Of Importing Drugs. Will It Catch On?

Frustration among consumers — especially those shouldering greater portions of their health bills through high-deductible health plans — is putting pressure on federal and state officials.