Kaiser Health News


Kaiser Health News (KHN) is a nonprofit news service committed to in-depth coverage of health care policy and politics. And we report on how the health care system — hospitals, doctors, nurses, insurers, governments, consumers — works. Check out our website at khn.org.

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Omicron and Other Coronavirus Variants: What You Need to Know

By Louis Jacobson, Politifact | Thursday Dec 2, 2021
Scientists caution that it's still too early to say whether omicron will prove as dangerous as delta. For now, here's what we know, and don't know, about the omicron variant.

Why You Can't Find Cheap At-Home Covid Tests

By Rachana Pradhan, Hannah Norman | Monday Nov 22, 2021
The U.S. produced covid-19 vaccines in record time, but, nearly two years into the pandemic, consumers have few options for cheap tests that quickly screen for infection.

Live Performers Find Red COVID State Rules a Tough Act to Follow

By Bruce Alpert | Monday Nov 15, 2021
Performers are coming up with creative ways to make sure the show goes on safely in states that ban venues from imposing vaccine or mask requirements.

Discontinuation of Puberty Blocker Drug Troublesome for Young Gender Dysphoria Patients

By Sydney Lupkin, NPR News | Wednesday Nov 10, 2021
The discontinuation of puberty-blocking drug Vantas may make it more difficult and cost-prohibitive for young patients suffering from gender dysphoria to receive treatment.

New Health Plans Offer Twists on Existing Options, With a Dose of 'Buyer Beware'

By Julie Appleby | Friday Nov 5, 2021
New health insurance options for 2022 are designed to look appealing for consumers but are not comprehensive medical coverage.

Unvaccinated? Don't Count on Leaving Your Family Death Benefits

By Michelle Andrews | Thursday Nov 4, 2021
If workers die of COVID and weren't vaccinated, their families may not get death benefits they would otherwise have received.

What Do We Really Know About COVID-19 Vaccine Effectiveness?

By Julie Appleby | Tuesday Nov 2, 2021
Getting vaccinated with any of the three COVID-19 vaccines available in the U.S. reduces the chance of getting infected, but no vaccine is 100% effective.

ERs Are Swamped With Seriously Ill Patients, Although Many Don't Have COVID

By Kate Wells, Michigan Radio | Saturday Oct 30, 2021
Even in parts of the country where COVID isn't overwhelming the health system, patients are showing up to the ER sicker than before the pandemic.

Medicare Plans' 'Free' Dental, Vision, Hearing Benefits Come at a Cost

By Phil Galewitz | Thursday Oct 28, 2021
Despite the high-powered advertising of the Medicare Advantage plans, beneficiaries still generally end up with significant out-of-pocket costs.

COVID Vigilantes Crowdsource Pandemic Safety Tips for Consumers

By Morgan Gonzalez | Friday Oct 22, 2021
Using a local approach, everyday people in cities without strict mask mandates take covid-19 safety into their own hands to protect themselves and their neighbors.

'They Treat Me Like I'm Old and Stupid': Seniors Decry Health Providers' Age Bias

By Judith Graham | Wednesday Oct 20, 2021
Ageism is a long-standing problem that's getting new attention during the covid pandemic, which has killed more than half a million Americans age 65 and older.

How to Crush Medical Debt: 5 Tips for Using Hospital Charity Care

By Emily Pisacreta | Wednesday Oct 20, 2021
The Affordable Care Act requires nonprofit hospitals to make financial assistance available to low-income patients and post those policies online.

Covid Testing, Turnaround Times Are Still Uneven This Far Into Pandemic

By Rae Ellen Bichell | Monday Oct 18, 2021
The ability to get a COVID test — and timely results — can vary widely nationwide.

6 Months to Live or Die: How Long Should an Alcoholic Liver Disease Patient Wait for a Transplant?

By Aneri Pattani | Monday Oct 18, 2021
In the U.S., a widespread practice requires patients with alcoholic liver disease to complete a period of sobriety before they can get on the waiting list for a liver.

Covid Immunity Through Infection or Vaccination: Are They Equal?

By Arthur Allen | Friday Oct 8, 2021
"We don't yet have full understanding of what the presence of antibodies tells us about immunity," says one infectious diseases expert.

The Pandemic Forced My Transgender Wife to Fight Our Insurer Over Hormones

By Helen Santoro | Wednesday Oct 6, 2021
Many state-federal health program for low-income people don't cover gender-affirming care, partly because of conservative policies and lack of research on how crucial this care is for patients.

The Part of the 'Free Britney' Saga That Could Happen to Anyone

By Christopher Magoon | Saturday Oct 2, 2021
Though the pop star's circumstances in a financial conservatorship are unusual, every year hundreds of thousands of other psychiatric patients also receive involuntary care, and many are stuck with the bill.

COVID Is Killing Rural Americans at Twice the Rate of Urbanites

By Lauren Webber | Friday Oct 1, 2021
Rural Americans are dying of covid at more than twice the rate of their urban counterparts — a divide that health experts say is likely to widen.

Who Qualifies for a COVID Booster? The List is Growing Longer

Monday Sep 27, 2021
So far, regulators have done a poor job of defining the universe of people considered at risk because of institutional and occupational exposure, but the list is growing.

A Daily Pill to Treat Covid Could Be Just Months Away, Scientists Say

By JoNel Aleccia | Friday Sep 24, 2021
A short-term regimen of daily pills that can fight the virus early after diagnosis and conceivably prevent symptoms from developing after exposure is in development.

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