Morning CheckUp: August 26, 2011

Perry and Romney in agreement on health care? “Perry’s nuanced stance — criticizing the Massachusetts plan while praising the state’s right to pursue one — illustrates how health care is unlikely to be the primary thrust of his argument against Romney. As Perry has surged to the top of the polls less than two weeks after announcing his candidacy, he has placed far more emphasis on jobs and the economy, areas in which Romney is seen as holding his own, than on health care, long seen as Romney’s Achilles heel in GOP circles.” [Boston Globe]

GOP governors in dilemma over health law: “Texas Gov. Rick Perry, along with a slew of other Republican governors, faces a dilemma: Do they apply for millions of dollars in federal grants by September to begin establishing state-run health insurance exchanges, or let the deadline slide, lose the federal money and risk falling into a federally run exchange?” [WSJ]

Coons doesn’t know the cost of health reform: “If the actual implementation of the Affordable Care Act results in ballooning runaway costs, we’re going to have to act to amend it and change it,” Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE) said during his first town hall meeting. “I support the basic objectives of the Affordable Care Act,” Coons said. “But I’m not going to sit here and say to you with a straight face that I completely understand the future impact and cost of every aspect of it. No responsible legislator should.” [Delaware Online]

Children’s coverage on the rise: “Thirty states boosted the proportion of eligible kids covered under the federal-state program and the national average moved from 80 percent to nearly 85 percent, according to a new report by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Urban Institute. Preliminary U.S. Census data suggests that expansion is continuing, the study says.” [Stateline]

HHS grants millions for prevention: The federal government has awarded “up to $137 million, partly supported by the Affordable Care Act, to states to strengthen the public health infrastructure and provide jobs in core areas of public health.” Most of the money comes out of the law’s prevention fund. [HHS]

Wisconsin study predicts higher coverage rates: “The federal health care overhaul signed into law last year will drastically cut the number of uninsured Wisconsin residents by 2016 but will drive up premiums for some customers and could cause some companies to drop coverage for their employees, a report released Wednesday found.” [Bloomberg Businessweek]

States still in rebellion over health law: “All told, 17 states have enacted laws rejecting parts of the Affordable Care Act, according to a report by the National Council of State Legislatures.” [Washington Times]

New York examining compensation of health executives: “A newly created task force investigating New York not-for-profits has mailed its first inquiry letters on executive compensation to state hospitals, Medicaid providers and social service agencies. The letter seeks detailed information on not-for-profit salaries, bonuses and perks for executives, managers and board members or those who are paid at least $100,000.” [Modern Healthcare]

Nebraska’s parental notification law goes into effect Saturday: The law “requires that any girl age 17 or younger seeking an abortion must get written, notarized consent from a parent or guardian.” Until now, state law required only that a parent be notified of a girl’s plans for an abortion. [Omaha World-Herald]

No link between vaccines and autism: “There is no link between vaccines and autism, the Institute of Medicine said in a report Thursday that will help the federal government administer a vaccine injury compensation program created in 1988. The report found “convincing evidence” that certain vaccines can cause 14 adverse effects — including seizures, brain inflammation and fainting — in rare cases. It also found “indicative though less clear data” linking certain vaccines to four other effects, including allergic reactions and temporary joint pain.” [Julian Pecquet]