KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: The Autumn of Democrats’ Discontent


Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. You can also listen on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Pocket Casts or wherever you listen to podcasts.


Democrats in Congress and the White House are feverishly negotiating to pass as much of President Joe Biden’s domestic agenda as they can agree on, even as Republicans who oppose much of the increased spending threaten to shut down the government and default on the nation’s debt.

Meanwhile, confusion over so-called booster shots for covid-19 continues, and advocates on both sides of the abortion debate try to test Texas’ novel abortion law that the Supreme Court allowed to take effect Sept. 1.

This week’s panelists are Julie Rovner of KHN, Joanne Kenen of Politico, Mary Ellen McIntire of CQ Roll Call and Sarah Karlin-Smith of the Pink Sheet.

Among the takeaways from this week’s episode:

  • As Democratic lawmakers wrestle with efforts to please different factions of the party on the giant “human infrastructure” bill, the stakes are enormous. The bill encompasses dozens of massive policy changes, and each one alone could be the subject of major legislation that in past years would have taken months to negotiate. Failure to reach enough agreement to get the bill passed could cause severe ramifications for the party in the next round of elections and for the Biden administration.
  • Among the key disagreements over health policy in that legislation is what Congress can do to hold down prescription drug prices. Negotiations are ongoing, but Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), who as head of the Finance Committee would have a strong hand in the final deal, is holding his cards close to his chest on what he will support.
  • Despite the rhetoric around the drug-pricing issue, it appears the factions of the Democratic Party are not opposed to all curbs. The dispute is over how to restrict price increases and by how much.
  • The drug industry is expecting to take a hit in the legislation, but it is using a broad advertising campaign to stress its need for funding to make medical innovations. However, the public seems inclined to want both: lower prices and better drug options. Plus, consumer advocates note that not all incentives in the current system are geared toward innovation and often reward only slight improvements in drugs.
  • The current confusion about when and who should get an additional covid shot is confusing Americans. Officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention seem to want a more cohesive strategy that doesn’t single out specific vaccines, but the push by the White House earlier this month added to the pressure to get those shots moving.
  • The U.S. promised more vaccine doses this week for underdeveloped countries since one of the biggest obstacles to getting people vaccinated in developing nations is a shortage of supply. But logistical problems loom large.

Also this week, Rovner interviews Dr. Scott Gottlieb, former commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration. He has a new book, titled “Uncontrolled Spread: Why COVID-19 Crushed Us and How We Can Defeat the Next Pandemic.”

Plus, for extra credit, the panelists recommend their favorite health policy stories of the week they think you should read too:

Julie Rovner: The New York Times’ “Their Baby Died in the Hospital. Then Came the $257,000 Bill,” by Sarah Kliff

Joanne Kenen: The New Yorker’s “The Struggle to Define Long Covid,” by Dhruv Khullar

Mary Ellen McIntire: KHN’s “Will ‘Dr. Disinformation’ Ever Face the Music?” by Victoria Knight

Sarah Karlin-Smith: The Washington Post’s “The World’s Tallest Populace Is Shrinking, and Scientists Want to Know Why,” by Rachel Pannett


To hear all our podcasts, click here.

And subscribe to KHN’s What the Health? on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Pocket Casts or wherever you listen to podcasts.

Note: This article have been indexed to our site. We do not claim legitimacy, ownership or copyright of any of the content above. To see the article at original source Click Here

Related Posts
"Ichilov": Efficacy for factsol in the treatment of recurrent prostate cancer without metastases thumbnail

“Ichilov”: Efficacy for factsol in the treatment of recurrent prostate cancer without metastases

מחקר שנערך במרכז הרפואי איכילוב-תל אביב הראה תוצאות מבטיחות לטיפול בפקטסול בחולי סרטן הערמונית במקרה של חזרת מחלה ללא גרורות. פקטסול הינו חומר טבעי המעכב את החלבון גלקטין 3, המעורב בתהליך הגידולי ובחזרת סרטן הערמונית. ד"ר דניאל קייזמן, מנהל היחידה לגידולי דרכי השתן במערך האונקולוגי ב"איכילוב", מוביל המחקר, מסביר: ״סרטן ערמונית הוא הגידול השכיח בגברים…
Read More
Back exercises in 15 minutes a day thumbnail

Back exercises in 15 minutes a day

Back pain is a common problem that many people deal with every day. Exercise often helps to ease back pain and prevent further discomfort. The following exercises stretch and strengthen the back and the muscles that support it. When you first start, repeat each exercise a few times. Then increase the number of times you
Read More
Index Of News
Consider making some contribution to keep us going. We are donation based team who works to bring the best content to the readers. Every donation matters.
Donate Now

Subscription Form

Liking our Index Of News so far? Would you like to subscribe to receive news updates daily?

Total
0
Share