Week in Washington is brought to you by Michael Cohen, PhD. Tune in each week to read the latest on healthcare policy and get a glimpse of what’s on the horizon
Week in Washington
The Supreme Court issued two major rulings this week involving health care. The first in AHA v. Beccerra, the Courts ruled unanimously that HHS improperly reduced payments to only 340B hospitals in 2018 and 2019 and consequently are able to recoup the amounts cut for those two years.
The Supreme Court also, in Arizona v. San Francisco, dismissed a request to reinstate the Trump Administration’s public charge rule. The public charge rule was designed to reduce immigrant families from accessing public services. The Biden Administration reversed the rule and the Supreme Court determined that the Biden Administration properly did so.
The Court is expected to release several other major decisions in the coming weeks that will affect health care such as Dobbs v. Jackson (abortion), CVS Pharmacy v. Doe (anti-discrimination provisions), and Sackett v. Environmental Protection Agency (Federal government regulatory authority)
Guns and mental health are the key items currently being debated in Congress over the next few weeks. While the bill is still being debated, the authors are pushing for a vote before the July 4th recess. The bill would increase gun safety as well as provide more funding/resources for mental health.
Two large news stories on inflation this week. The first, the Federal Reserve increased interest rates by the largest amount (75 basis points) since 1994 to combat inflation. The other is, even before the higher interest rates, there is growing data that consumers are reducing or planning on reducing spending given the higher costs. There is growing speculation that higher food and housing costs will reduce spending on other items, including health care. This is also growing concern of a recession in the first half of 2023.
- The FDA is poised to (finally) approve a Covid vaccine for children under 5. Vaccines for this group is expected to be available starting next week.
- Covid cases declined this week. The expectation is hospitalizations are likely to decline in the coming weeks.
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