Health Care

The Progressive Pulse: Democrats decry racial health disparities in their renewed push for Medicaid expansion

By Alanna Joyner / April 14, 2021 /

Last week, state Democrats renewed their calls for Medicaid expansion in an effort to address the state’s long-standing racial health disparities and to help out the state’s economic recovery from the pandemic.  Under the American Rescue Plan, the state would receive more than $1.7 billion in federal funding in addition to incentives targeted at helping…

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The federal pandemic relief bill contains a big carrot to expand Medicaid. Will North Carolina bite?

By Alanna Joyner / March 23, 2021 /

Today marks the 11th anniversary of the passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) — a law that reformed the health care system and allowed more than 20 million Americans to gain coverage. Although the law passed over a decade ago, North Carolina remains one of the 12 states that have not adopted Medicaid expansion…

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Progressive Pulse: NC General Assembly can afford to go all-in to address COVID-19 harm

By Alanna Joyner / January 21, 2021 /

Last Wednesday, the North Carolina General Assembly officially began its two-year session, with COVID-19 relief spending, a two-year state budget, school spending and redistricting among the top agenda items this year.  Prior to the NCGA’s adjournment, the Republican-led legislature failed to address long standing unmet needs for struggling North Carolinians. According to the state’s latest…

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The News & Observer: Families are struggling while billions sit unused in NC. Legislators are to blame

By Alanna Joyner / December 8, 2020 /

Both federal and state unemployment, protections against evictions and other key stimulus programs are set to expire in the coming weeks. Without the new aid, millions of Americans are at risk as the pandemic worsens.  After months of failed negotiations, the House and Senate have resumed stimulus amid the impending housing and economic crisis, yet…

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The Affordable Care Act returns to the Supreme Court in the shadow of a pandemic

By Alanna Joyner / November 10, 2020 /

Today, the Supreme Court will hear the Republican lawsuit to overturn The Affordable Care Act (ACA), ending its protections for 135 million Americans with pre-existing conditions and ripping health care away from 20 million Americans — all during an intensifying pandemic. Amid a historic health and economic crisis that has deprived millions of Americans of…

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Progressive Pulse: N.C. is fifth in the nation in lost health insurance coverage due to the COVID-19 recession

By Alanna Joyner / July 22, 2020 /

According to a new report from researchers at the group Families USA, North Carolina is one of the hardest hit state by COVID-19’s economic impact with 238,000 people losing health insurance through May. One-in-five adults under age 65 in North Carolina was uninsured as state lawmakers refused to pass Medicaid expansion in the latest legislative…

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The New York Times: Trump Administration Strips C.D.C. of Control of Coronavirus Data

By Alanna Joyner / July 20, 2020 /

Last week, the Trump Administration stripped control of all COVID-19 data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and has ordered hospitals to send the information to the Department of Health and Human Services through a private company. Since the pandemic began, the CDC has regularly published data on availability of hospital beds,…

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WRAL: Long-standing, unmet priorities are even more critical now

By Alanna Joyner / May 20, 2020 /

Two weeks after meeting to approve a $1.6 billion package that distributed COVID-19 funds from Washington, the North Carolina General Assembly resumed its annual session on Monday.  The N.C. Senate unveiled spending priorities on Tuesday for the coming fiscal year, rolling out more than 18 separate bills. The N.C. House has yet to lay out…

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Decades of cuts leaving Eastern North Carolina hospitals vulnerable to financial losses due to coronavirus

By Alanna Joyner / May 5, 2020 /

North Carolina currently has 49 rural and independent hospitals around the state, but the financial toll caused by the COVID-19 outbreak may strain the remaining hospitals already struggling from decades of funding cuts.  As the pandemic continues to sweep across the state, rural hospitals are set to lose more than $145 million per month. The…

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Lawmakers falter on Medicaid expansion in the coronavirus relief package

By Alanna Joyner / May 4, 2020 /

With more than one million North Carolinians who have lost their jobs in a system where many workers receive health insurance through their employers and over 49 rural hospitals losing millions per month, the need for Medicaid expansion is paramount.  Yet, state lawmakers moved forward in passing the coronavirus relief package with very limited and…

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