South Dakota, Kansas, Maryland, Virginia, Texas, California, Connecticut, Maine, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Illinois.
The Associated Press: Ban On Treatments For Transgender Kids Fails In South Dakota
Legislation aimed at stopping South Dakota physicians from providing puberty blockers and gender confirmation surgery to transgender children under 16 failed to get enough support Monday in a Senate committee. A Republican-dominated Senate committee voted 5-2 to kill the proposal, likely ensuring the issue won’t be considered by the Legislature again this year. (2/10)
CBS News: Coffeyville, Kansas Medical Debt: County In Rural Kansas Is Jailing People Over Unpaid Medical Debt
Tres Biggs was working two jobs but they fell behind on their medical bills, then the unthinkable happened. “You wouldn’t think you’d go to jail over medical bills,” Tres Biggs said. Tres Biggs went to jail for failing to appear in court for unpaid medical bills. He described it as “scary.” “I was scared to death,” Tres Biggs said. “I’m a country kid — I had to strip down, get hosed and put a jumpsuit on.” Bail was $500. He said they had “maybe $50 to $100” at the time. In rural Coffeyville, Kansas, where the poverty rate is twice the national average, attorneys like Michael Hassenplug have built successful law practices representing medical providers to collect debt owed by their neighbors. “I’m just doing my job,” Hassenplug said. “They want the money collected, and I’m trying to do my job as best I can by following the law.” (CBS News, 2/9)
The Hill: Maryland Will Ban Disposable E-Cigarettes Exempt From Trump Policy
Maryland will become the first state to ban all flavors of disposable e-cigarettes except for tobacco and menthol, the state’s comptroller announced Monday. Comptroller Peter Franchot (D) said the policy will close a loophole in the Trump administration’s limited e-cigarette flavor ban. The administration’s flavored vaping product guidance, which took effect last week, banned popular cartridge-based fruit and mint flavors but not tobacco and menthol. Disposable e-cigarettes, open tank systems and e-liquids of any flavor, including those mixed in vape shops, remain available under the policy. The administration’s decision left public health advocates and many lawmakers unsatisfied with what they saw as a gigantic exemption for the industry. (Weixel, 2/10)
The Washington Post: Northern Virginia Student Dies After Contracting Flu, Mother Says
A student at a high school in Loudoun County, Va., died last week after contracting the flu, her mother said. Katie Giovanniello, 16, a sophomore at Heritage High School in the Leesburg area, died at a hospital Friday morning, said her mother, Colette Giovanniello. The county health director and a spokesman for the county school system both confirmed the death but gave no cause. (Weil, 2/10)
Texas Tribune: Texas Asks Supreme Court To End California Law Banning State-Funded Travel
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton asked the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday to strike down a 2016 California law that bans state-funded travel to states with discriminatory laws — a list Texas landed on nearly three years ago after the Legislature approved a religious-refusal law for adoptions in the state. California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, whose office maintains a list of qualifying discriminatory laws, said in June 2017 that the Texas law “allows foster care agencies to discriminate against children in foster care and potentially disqualify LGBT families from the state’s foster and adoption system.” (Platoff, 2/10)
KQED: California Lawmakers Have Refused To Restrict Flavored Vaping — Is That About To Change?
Yet California is behind some other states and the Trump administration when it comes to cracking down on flavored tobacco and e-cigarette use — nor has it moved to block the sale of flavored vape products containing cannabis. San Francisco-based Juul Labs Inc., maker of vape pens and nicotine pods, poured hundreds of thousands into lobbying and political campaigns — and until now successfully quashed bills to ban flavored tobacco in California.This year could change that. (Aguilera, 2/10)
California Healthline: Newsom Touts California’s ‘Public Option.’ Wait — What Public Option?
Several Democratic presidential hopefuls are pitching a federal “public option” as a way to expand health coverage and make it more affordable. The details of their proposals vary, but the general idea is to create a government-sponsored plan that could compete with private insurance. “We have a public option, just so folks know,” California Gov. Gavin Newsom claimed last month as he unveiled his proposed 2020-21 state budget. “It’s called Covered California.” (Ibarra, 2/10)
The Baltimore Sun: Mayor Young Signs Bill Named After Elijah Cummings To Make Baltimore A ‘Trauma-Responsive City’
Nearly a year to the day after a former assistant basketball coach was shot inside Frederick Douglass High School, city officials joined students from the school as Baltimore Mayor Bernard C. “Jack” Young signed into law a bill that will look to address the trauma the city’s children suffer on a regular basis. Inside the high school Sunday afternoon, Young signed into law the Elijah Cummings Healing City Act, a bill that creates a “Trauma-Informed Care Task Force” to train employees how to lessen the impact of trauma while performing their jobs. (Davis, 2/9)
The CT Mirror: Fiscal Cure Sought For UConn Health
Escalating costs and ongoing deficits at UConn Health are forcing the administration of Gov. Ned Lamont to question whether the state can afford to continue subsidizing the public teaching hospital, a vast complex of 26 buildings spread across 209 acres in Farmington. The state last year picked up $244 million of UConn Health’s $1 billion budget. (Thomas, 2/11)
San Francisco Chronicle: In A First, Court Says A State Must Provide Gender-Confirmation Surgery To Inmate
A federal appeals court in San Francisco on Monday affirmed its ruling, the first by any appellate court, ordering a state to provide gender-confirmation surgery to a transgender inmate. Ten Republican-appointed judges dissented, including the court’s first openly gay judge. (Egelko, 2/10)
The Associated Press: Rural Maine Hospitals Hope To Fix Worker Shortage With EMTs
A legislative committee in Maine approved a proposal designed to help rural hospitals in the state hire more emergency medical technicians. (2/10)
San Francisco Chronicle: SF Rescues Homes For Elderly, Homeless And Mentally Ill On The Verge Of Closing
San Francisco has lost more than a quarter of its board-and-care beds since 2012, according to city data. Many operators have blamed their woes on the city’s high cost of doing business, trouble with hiring and retaining staff, and exhaustion from taking care of a demanding population for often little pay in return. Those factors also increase temptations to sell the homes in San Francisco’s hot real estate market. (Thadani, 2/10)
Cleveland Plain Dealer: Lawsuit Says Cuyahoga County Corrections Officers Did Not Properly Handle Woman’s Mental Health Issues
A Lakewood woman said in a lawsuit that Cuyahoga County Jail staff did not properly tend to her mental health issues while she was behind bars in 2018, exacerbating her already acute problems.Heather Bottum, 47, sued the county and 19 current and former jail employees Friday in federal court. The lawsuit says she was placed in isolation and put in a restraint chair while her mental condition deteriorated, and that staff punished her instead of giving her access to programs she needed. (Heisig, 2/10)
Reveal: Pennsylvania Investigates Jehovah’s Witnesses For Child Sex Abuse
The Pennsylvania attorney general’s office has opened a grand jury investigation into how Jehovah’s Witnesses leaders handle allegations of child sexual abuse, according to three people who have been called to testify in closed-door hearings. Mark O’Donnell, a former Jehovah’s Witness, told Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting that Pennsylvania investigators visited his home in Baltimore in June and interviewed him for three hours. (Bundy, 2/10)
St. Louis Public Radio: Overwhelmed By Demand, Collinsville Marijuana Dispensary Finds A Fix For Lack Of Parking
The first month of recreational marijuana sales at Illinois Supply and Provisions brought hordes of people and their vehicles to a store that didn’t have enough parking for them. The dispensary reserved its 45-space parking lot for medical patients and handicapped recreational customers. A maze of metal barriers occupied the spaces directly in front of the store to contain crowds of people wanting to buy recreational cannabis. (Schmid, 2/10)
This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.
Syndicated from https://khn.org/morning-breakout/state-highlights-south-dakota-bill-banning-transgender-youth-treatment-fails-kansas-man-in-poverty-stricken-area-wound-up-in-jail-for-not-paying-medical-bills/