Aduhelm, approved by the Food and Drug Administration last month despite questions about its efficacy, could be prescribed to at least 1 million patients a year, for a price tag of about $56 billion. Experts suggest there might be better ways to spend that money.
The covid pandemic and President Joe Biden’s agenda — a planned $400 billion infusion of support — have focused national attention on the need to expand home- and community-based long-term care services designed to keep people out of nursing homes. But the need far outpaces the staffing.
Democrats in Congress and the states are devising strategies to expand health coverage — through the Affordable Care Act, Medicare, Medicaid and a “public option.” But progress remains halting, at best. Meanwhile, lawmakers in Washington may have to agree on how to control prescription drug prices if they wish to finance their coverage initiatives. Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico, Tami Luhby of CNN and Shefali Luthra of The 19th join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more. Also, Rovner interviews Michelle Andrews, who reported and wrote last month’s KHN-NPR “Bill of the Month” episode about a very expensive sleep study.
The number of Americans 65 and older is expected to nearly double in the next 40 years. Finding a way to provide and pay for the long-term health services they need won’t be easy.
Long-term care options are expensive and often out of reach for seniors and people with disabilities. The president has proposed a massive infusion of federal funding for home and community-based health services that advocates say will go a long way toward helping individuals and families.
The underfunding of public health and political backlash destabilized Missouri’s vaccine rollout, creating racial inequity and forcing some residents to drive hours to get shots.
As the recent winter storm disaster in Texas showed, many long-term care sites aren’t required to have backup power supplies or other redundancies to keep residents safe when disaster strikes.
Relatives and advocates are calling for federal authorities to relax restrictions in long-term care institutions and grant special status to “essential caregivers” — family members or friends who provide critically important hands-on care — so they have the opportunity to tend to relatives in need.
Some assisted living facilities, pharmacy chains and health care providers are luring new customers with covid shots.
As the coronavirus surges around the country, workers in nursing homes and assisted living centers are watching cases rise in long-term care facilities with a sense of dread. Many of these workers struggle with grief over the suffering they’ve witnessed.