Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Play

Nashville mourns six dead in the latest mass shooting, the EPA takes public input on a proposal to clean up Pennsylvania's drinking water, and find ways to get more Zzz's during Sleep Awareness Month.

Play

A shooting leaves six dead at a school in Nashville, the White House commends Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's decision to pause judicial reform, and mayors question the reach of state and federal authorities over local decisions.

Play

Finding childcare is a struggle everywhere, prompting North Carolina's Transylvania County to try a new approach. Maine is slowly building-out broadband access, but disagreements remain over whether local versus national companies should get the contracts, and specialty apps like "Farmers Dating" help those in small communities connect online.

Michiganders: Out-of-Pocket Health-Care Costs Devastating Family Budgets

Play

Thursday, August 4, 2022   

Congress is considering a major legislative package which could affect not only investments in climate change, but the affordability of health care.

Health care advocates stressed it comes not a moment too soon. One study found from 1970 to 2020, the average American's health care costs rose from $1,875 a year to more than $12,500.

Jim Manley, board member of Consumers for Quality Care, said the main concern is out-of-pocket costs are too high, according to the group's new poll. He pointed out Michiganders agree they are getting squeezed by health care costs.

"As in other states, high deductibles, rising out-of-pocket costs and unpaid medical bills are plaguing American health care consumers," Manley observed. "In the poll we did in Michigan, 67% of Michiganders agreed the cost of health care was going up more than other things they need."

The poll, by Impact Research and Michigan Research Associates, found 84% of Michigan voters say the amount they pay out of pocket for health care seems to be going up every year. The U.S. Senate could vote on the package, known as the Inflation Reduction Act, by the end of the week.

Last week, West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer agreed on a bill which will allow Medicare to negotiate some drug prices and cap out-of-pocket prescription drug costs.

Going forward, Monique Stanton, CEO of the Michigan League for Public Policy, said the health care portion of the Inflation Reduction Act Inflation Reduction Act could do more but it will help relieve Michigan families of the often crushing medical bills which force them to drastically cut spending on food and other essentials.

"Congress capping insurance deductibles, your prescription drug copays, these other out-of-pocket maximums that are at levels that are reasonable for a family to afford, really helps prevent people from going into medical debt," Stanton noted. "As well as making sure that they have the access to health care."

Since no Republicans plan to vote for the bill, Senate Democrats say they will pass it under the budget reconciliation process, but must have all 50 members of their caucus and the vice president vote yes to do so. Passage could hinge on Arizona Democrat Kyrsten Sinema, who has not yet said how she will vote.


get more stories like this via email
The Los Angeles City Council recently voted to allow the Department of Water and Power to convert Scattergood Power Plant near Playa del Rey to burn a blend of hydrogen gas and natural gas, something environmental groups say would create air pollution. (Facewizard/Wikimedia Commons)

Environment

Environmental groups are seeking greater input as California puts the finishing touches on its application to become a hub for hydrogen fuel productio…


Social Issues

This month marks 160 years since the first Medal of Honor was awarded by President Abraham Lincoln. More than a dozen of the 65 recipients alive …

Social Issues

160 years ago, Civil War soldiers were awarded the first Medals of Honor. Now, a Medal of Honor Monument will soon be built on the National Mall in …


A 2021 Congressional report said tens of thousands of COVID-19 infections, as well as hundreds of worker deaths, were traced to meatpacking plants in the United States at the onset of the pandemic. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

The meat processing industry continues to face scrutiny over labor practices in states like Minnesota. Proposed legislation would update a 2007 law…

Social Issues

New findings suggest health effects stemming from child maltreatment can be passed on to the next generation. In South Dakota, leaders in early-…

The average annual pay for a fast-food worker in the U.S. is $27,040 a year, or approximately $13.00 an hour, according to ZipRecruiter. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Mexican fast-food chain Chipotle will pay workers at its former location in Augusta, Maine as part of a settlement over labor law violations…

Environment

One Arizona mayor is among the more than 2,800 elected city officials in Washington, D.C., this week for The National League of Cities' Congressional …

Environment

Congress is considering three bills that would sidestep the Endangered Species Act to de-list the Northern Continental Divide and Yellowstone grizzly …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021