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Those who turn their attention to the Supreme Court are expected to relinquish their right to abortion as judges deliver their verdict on the Mississippi abortion law at the end of the current session. What one would expect is a draft of that opinion – which called for a complete reversal of the almost 50-year-old. Rowe vs. Wade Decision – will be leaked to Politico. The response from both sides to the divisive debate has been quick and loud and could affect the upcoming midterm elections.
Meanwhile, the FDA is proposing a ban on menthol flavors in cigarettes and cigars, a move that has sparked controversy over whether using African menthol-flavored products at a higher rate than other people inadvertently hurts or aids African Americans.
This week’s panelists are Julie Rovner of KHN, Joan Kennen of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Politics, and Shefali Luthra, 19.MAnd Jesse Hellman of CQ Roll Call.
In this week’s episode Takeway:
- If the Supreme Court had reversed Rowe, Abortion will not become illegal immediately. Instead, the decision to ban abortion will be left to state legislators. Proponents of her case have been working to make the actual transcript of this statement available online. Rowe Fall
- The leaked opinion of Justice Samuel Alito could have serious repercussions for the court; Chief Justice John Roberts called it a betrayal of the judicial process. This, of course, has become a big game for Washington to guess who leaked it and why, and admirable theories have been propagated about both conservative and progressive motives.
- However, Politico, which commented on the draft, reported that four other Alito judges had supported his dismissal. Rowe, The process of writing opinions and the process of lobbying by judges changes the vote. The draft is due in February, so the bench’s thinking may shift somewhat, and Roberts, as a Conservative who did not agree with the draft, is working to change the final position.
- However, it seems obvious Rowe Will not come out unscathed from this case.
- Alito goes on to say in his draft that the court’s argument in this case would not affect other rights that the court granted on the basis of privacy protections, such as the use of contraceptives. But many constitutional law experts say this may not be true, and anti-abortion groups seem keen to legislate the idea that human life begins during pregnancy. Such measures may affect contraceptive access.
- Despite much outrage, Democrats have no easy way to protect their abortion rights Rowe In turn, congressional action by Republicans and some anti-abortion Democrats, including Sen. Joe Manchin (DW.Va.), is sure to thwart Congress.
- Some large corporations are joining the debate by offering coverage for travel if workers have to go to another state for abortion.
- The number of abortions in the United States has dropped significantly in recent years. It is unknown at this time what he will do after leaving the post. And the increasing use of drug abortions, where prescription drugs are used to end pregnancy in the early weeks, could also change the landscape.
- In the past, suggestions to eliminate menthol from smoking products have been met with allegations of racial targeting. Health leaders in the black community are divided over the issue.
- Biogen, the maker of the controversial Alzheimer’s drug Aduhelum, after many doctors and safety experts expressed concern about the drug and Medicare refused to cover it, unless a patient was enrolled in a clinical trial looking at the long-term effects of the drug. The drugmaker announced this week that its CEO was resigning and that the company was cutting off most marketing for the drug.
- A federal watchdog has observed that private Medicare Advantage plans often deny beneficiaries the services they need. Plans, which are an alternative to traditional fee-for-service Medicare, typically offer consumers additional benefits such as dental or vision services and protection against high out-of-pocket costs. But the Inspector General of Health and Human Services says Medicare should be given more oversight because of the widespread problem of inadequate denial of care.
Also this week, Rovner interviewed Paula Andalo of KHN, who reported and wrote the latest KHN-NPR “Bill of the Month” installment about a family whose medical debts forced them to care south of the border. If you have an objectionable medical bill that you would like to share with us, you can do so here.
Also, for extra credit, the panelists recommend their favorite health policy stories of the week that they think you should read:
Julie Rovner: Mother Jones ‘”Meet Abortion Banks’ New Best Friend – Your Phone,” by Lil Kalish
Joanne buys: Mohana Rabindranath’s “A clash over online adrenal prescription raises new questions about telehealth,”
Jesse Hellman: Politico “Oregon, Kentucky dusts off Obama-era policy for health insurance expansion,” by Megan Messerley
Shefali Luthra: 19MIts “Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito argued that abortion is not an economic problem. But is that true? ” By Chabeli Carrazana
Also discussed in this week’s podcast:
Politico “Supreme Court Votes to Abolish Abortion Rights, Draft Opinion Shows,” by Josh Garstein and Alexander Ward
KHN’s “historic ‘breach’ warns proponents and opponents of abortion rights of impending earthquake,” by Julie Rovner
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