Overnight Health Care: ObamaCare signup groups to get answers on funding this week | Dems demand Trump action on opioids | More Dems back ‘Medicare for All’ bill

Overnight Health Care: ObamaCare signup groups to get answers on funding this week | Dems demand Trump action on opioids | More Dems back ‘Medicare for All’ bill
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Groups that help people sign up for ObamaCare are expected to learn this week how much money they'll receive from the federal government after the Trump administration slashed the total grant money available, according to an email obtained by The Hill.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services sent the groups, known as navigators, an email Monday afternoon, saying the notice of their grant award is "scheduled to be made available this week."

Late last month, the Trump administration announced it was cutting money for navigators, which also help with ObamaCare education and outreach.

Read the full story here.

 

Dems accuse Trump of ObamaCare enrollment sabotage

A group of House Democrats is accusing the Trump administration of deliberately sabotaging ObamaCare enrollment efforts.

In a letter sent Monday, the ranking Democrats on the House Energy and Commerce Committee demanded answers about the Trump administration's decision to slash funding for ObamaCare outreach.

The lawmakers said they're worried that the cuts are part of a deliberate attempt by the administration to destabilize the health insurance markets ahead of an open enrollment period that begins Nov. 1.

"[I]t appears that the decision fits within a pattern of Administration efforts to depress enrollment and sabotage [ObamaCare]," the lawmakers wrote.

Read more here.

 

Senate Dems demand Trump action on opioids

A group of Democratic senators is demanding President Trump take action to combat the opioid epidemic, nearly a month after the president declared it a national emergency.

In a letter sent Monday, Sen. Ed MarkeyEdward (Ed) John MarkeyOvernight Defense: Mattis dismisses talk he may be leaving | Polish president floats 'Fort Trump' | Dem bill would ban low-yield nukes Dems introduce bill to ban low-yield nukes Some employees' personal data revealed in State Department email breach: report MORE (D-Mass.) and nine other Democrats asked Trump how the administration is evaluating the emergency declaration recommendation and the steps it will take to end "the opioid use disorder and overdose crisis."

On Aug. 10, Trump said the opioid epidemic was a national emergency, but nothing has happened since. No paperwork has been issued formally declaring an emergency, and no new policies have been announced.

"Regardless of whether you choose to declare a state of emergency, continued inaction on this issue is deeply concerning," the senators wrote.

Read more here.

 

Dems call for ObamaCare hearings in the House

Democrats are calling on House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin BradyKevin Patrick BradyHouse GOP bill a mixed bag for retirement savers China imposes new tariffs on billion of US goods: report Trump announces tariffs on 0B in Chinese goods MORE (R-Texas) to hold bipartisan hearings on stabilizing ObamaCare markets.

The committee's Democrats in a letter to Brady dated Friday requested that the panel hold hearings, and cited the Senate Health Committee's hearings this month as an example.

"We request that the Committee on Ways and Means, especially our Subcommittee on Health, likewise hold bipartisan hearings to set the course for expeditious action to stabilize individual insurance markets and lower costs," they wrote.

Read more here.

 

Two Dems sign on to 'Medicare for all' bill

Sen. Jeff MerkleyJeffrey (Jeff) Alan MerkleyOvernight Energy: Warren bill would force companies to disclose climate impacts | Green group backs Gillum in Florida gov race | Feds to open refuge near former nuke site Warren wants companies to disclose more about climate change impacts DHS transferred about 0M from separate agencies to ICE this year: report MORE (D-Ore.) on Monday announced he would co-sponsor the "Medicare-for-all" bill being introduced by Sen. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersTrump's trade war — firing all cannons or closing the portholes? The Hill's 12:30 Report — Trump rips 'ridiculous' spending bill | FBI dragged into new fight | Latest on Maryland shooting Poll: Most Massachusetts voters don't think Warren should run for president in 2020 MORE (I-Vt.).

"Health care should be a right for every single American, not a privilege reserved for the healthy and the wealthy," Merkley said in a statement.

Read more on Merkley here.

Sen. Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerPoll: Most Massachusetts voters don't think Warren should run for president in 2020 Trump, GOP regain edge in Kavanaugh battle Booker: It would be ‘irresponsible’ not to consider running for president MORE is also throwing his support behind the bill, becoming the latest Democrat floated as a 2020 contender to back the legislation.

The New Jersey senator told NJTV News that he would sign on as a co-sponsor of the bill, which is scheduled to be rolled out on Wednesday. "This is something that's got to happen. ObamaCare was a first step in advancing this country, but I won't rest until every American has a basic security that comes with having access to affordable health care," Booker told the New Jersey outlet.

Read more on Booker here.

 

Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulConservatives left frustrated as Congress passes big spending bills Senate approves 4B spending bill Some employees' personal data revealed in State Department email breach: report MORE: Graham-Cassidy ObamaCare bill not 'going anywhere'

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) said Monday that he opposes a new Republican ObamaCare replacement effort, saying it does not go far enough to repeal the law.

Paul told reporters that the bill from GOP Sens. Bill CassidyWilliam (Bill) Morgan CassidyOvernight Health Care: HHS diverts funds to pay for detaining migrant children | Health officials defend transfers | Lawmakers consider easing drug company costs in opioids deal Overnight Health Care: Senators target surprise medical bills | Group looks to allow Medicaid funds for substance abuse programs | FDA launches anti-vaping campaign for teens Bipartisan senators unveil proposal to crack down on surprise medical bills MORE (La.) and Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamKim, Moon toss ball to Trump in ‘last, best chance’ for Korean peace GOP senator: Kavanaugh accuser 'moving the goalposts' Collins: Kavanaugh accuser should 'reconsider,' testify on Monday MORE (S.C.) would "probably" be worse than doing nothing at all on the health law.

The measure already faced extremely long odds to pass before a procedural deadline of Sept. 30. Republican leadership has shown no interest in the measure, though the White House is pushing for it.

Paul said he objects that the bill would leave many of ObamaCare's taxes and regulations in place.

"I don't think it's going anywhere," he said. "I haven't heard anybody talking about it."

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin HatchOrrin Grant HatchDem vows to probe 'why the FBI stood down' on Kavanaugh Senate Democrats increase pressure for FBI investigation of Kavanaugh Grand Staircase-Escalante: A conservation triumph is headed for future as playground for industry MORE (R-Utah) responded simply "no" on Monday when asked if he thought the bill would get a vote on the Senate floor. He said he did not think there is enough support for it.

Cassidy and Graham, though, are still pushing, and plan to unveil the bill on Wednesday. Cassidy said Monday his office has already been talking with the Congressional Budget Office, even as the final language comes together.

Read more here.

 

What we're reading:

A month has passed since Trump declared an opioid emergency. What next? (The New York Times)

9/11 first responders face lingering illness (Newsday)

Bracing for Irma, Miami's largest hospital stocked up a record number of drugs (Stat)

 

State by state

Ohio's opioid suit should be thrown out, Purdue Pharma argues (Bloomberg)

Seven days of heroin (Cincinnati Enquirer)

Idaho considers a new approach to health insurance for sick and working poor (Idaho Statesman)

 

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Join us Tuesday, September 12 for "Turning Genes into Medicine: Reimagining Our Health Care System," featuring Rep. Suzan DelBeneSuzan Kay DelBeneRecord numbers of women nominated for governor, Congress Hillicon Valley: Deal reached on ZTE, but lawmakers look to block it | New encryption bill | Dems push Ryan for net neutrality vote | Google vows it won't use AI for weapons Lawmakers renew push to preempt state encryption laws MORE (D-Wash.) and Rep. Patrick Meehan (R-Pa.). Topics of discussion include incentivizing medical innovation and the impact of new treatments on the American health ecosystem and patients. RSVP Here

 

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Join us Wednesday, September 13 for "America's Opioid Epidemic: Search for Solutions," featuring Sen. Rob PortmanRobert (Rob) Jones PortmanGraham calls handling of Kavanaugh allegations 'a drive-by shooting' Overnight Health Care: Senators target surprise medical bills | Group looks to allow Medicaid funds for substance abuse programs | FDA launches anti-vaping campaign for teens Bipartisan group wants to lift Medicaid restriction on substance abuse treatment MORE (R-Ohio) and Rep. Paul Tonko (D-N.Y.). Topics of discussion include national and local strategies to tackle the opioid crisis, and addressing and eliminating barriers to treatment and recovery. RSVP Here