Morning CheckUp: August 10, 2011

What the super committee appointments mean for health care: “Baucus’ unexpected appointment viewed as good news for Medicare and Medicaid advocates, Kerry bringing with him years of support for teaching hospitals, home health and medical devices, and Murray entering as a strong reproductive rights and drug reimportation supporter.” [Inside Health Policy]

Health premiums vary across the country: “Average costs ranged widely, from about $136 a month in Alabama to more than $400 in Vermont and Massachusetts, according to the report from the Kaiser Family Foundation. The national average was $215.” [Kaiser Health News]

$28.8 million for community health centers: “The Obama administration said it will spend $28.8 million on grants to create new community health center sites in 23 U.S. states and Puerto Rico. The grants, announced on Tuesday, are part of $11 billion promised for new and existing health care centers over the next five years.” [Reuters]

The success of Medicare Part D: “While Medicare Part D has served its target population well — much better than Democrats initially projected — it does not necessarily lay the groundwork for private insurance in the rest of Medicare.” [Sarah Kliff]


S&P; warns of Medicare cuts: “Standard & Poor’s said home-care providers Gentiva Health Services and Advanced Homecare Holdings, long-term acute-care hospital operator LifeCare Holdings and hospital company Prospect Medical Holdings would be most vulnerable should Congress help to reduce the deficit with Medicare cuts.” [Modern Healthcare]

Pawlenty teams up with anti-abortion groups: “Anti-abortion activists were joined by Republican presidential hopeful Tim Pawlenty as they launched a bus tour promoting their conservative agenda. Speaking Tuesday morning outside the Iowa Capitol, Pawlenty touted his record in support of abortion restrictions while governor of Minnesota. He told a small knot of people watching the launch of the tour that anti-abortion forces will eventually win the debate by being persistent.” [AP]

Kansas appeals Planned Parenthood case: “The state of Kansas on Tuesday asked a federal appeals court to overturn a judge’s order and allow it to cut off federal family planning funding for Planned Parenthood.” [AP]