Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with Axios AM/PM. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on the day's biggest business stories

Subscribe to Axios Closer for insights into the day’s business news and trends and why they matter

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sign up for Axios Pro Rata

Dive into the world of dealmakers across VC, PE and M&A with Axios Pro Rata. Delivered daily to your inbox by Dan Primack and Kia Kokalitcheva.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sports news worthy of your time

Binge on the stats and stories that drive the sports world with Axios Sports. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tech news worthy of your time

Get our smart take on technology from the Valley and D.C. with Axios Login. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Get the inside stories

Get an insider's guide to the new White House with Axios Sneak Peek. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Denver news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Des Moines news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Des Moines

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Twin Cities news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Tampa Bay news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Tampa Bay

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Charlotte news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Nashville news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Nashville newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Columbus news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Columbus newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Dallas news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Dallas newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Austin news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Austin newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Atlanta news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Atlanta newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Philadelphia news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Philadelphia newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Chicago news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Chicago newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sign up for Axios NW Arkansas

Stay up-to-date on the most important and interesting stories affecting NW Arkansas, authored by local reporters

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top DC news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios DC newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

The Axios roundtable last Thursday morning in Nashville. Photo: Adam Sanner for Axios

Last Thursday, Axios' Sam Baker hosted an Expert Voices Live roundtable in Nashville, TN on health care access and affordability in the state.

Government officials, academic experts and local leaders discussed the challenges faced by care providers in delivering equitable, high-quality care, and the lasting impact this has on local communities.

Centralizing services
Katina Beard, CEO of Matthew Walker Health Center, discussing the wider applications of the community health center model last Thursday. Photo: Adam Sanner for Axios

A significant portion of the conversation was dedicated to discussing the potential of centralizing health services and applying the community health center model on a larger scale.

  • Mary Bufwack, CEO Emeritus at Neighborhood Health, discussed the legal obstacles for health centers that provide different types of care under one roof: "[There are] licensing issues for centers that specialize in different things...It's hard to have a centralized place for a range of services with these licensing issues."
  • Katina Beard, CEO at the Matthew Walker Health Center highlighted the positive impact of more broadly applying the community health center model: "There are a lot of lessons from the community health center world that can be applied to broader health systems...[We want] to look at how we can co-locate services better, and cobble services together, especially in rural areas. How do we get [patients] to the dentist and other care providers?"
  • Stu Clark, CEO at Premise Health on the significance of more equitable health coverage: "[We need to get off] the fee-for-service treadmill and translate this to rural areas and underserved areas...[Health care] is an issue of courage and this country doesn’t have it."
Effectively allocating funding
Dr. Sayeh Nikpay, Assistant Professor of Health Policy at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in conversation last Thursday morning. Photo: Adam Sanner for Axios

Structural inefficiencies in the financing of health care coverage featured prominently in the discussion.

  • Dr. Stacie B. Dusetzina, Associate Professor of Health Policy and Associate Professor of Cancer Research at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine on the distribution of resources in health: "A big piece of the puzzle is how we pay for services...Our current system incentivizes inefficiency; we’re overspending and getting less comprehensive health benefits...Lots of people are making money for the current system so don’t want to change it. [But we need to] look at centers that are trying to do more with less, lots of lessons to take from there."
  • Dr. Sayeh Nikpay, Assistant Professor of Health Policy at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine highlighted the disparities in the current system: "There’s money there, but it doesn’t get deployed to the places where it will make the most impact...[For health providers] Where is the blockage? How do we get those resources to you?"
  • Dr. Melinda Buntin, Chair of the Department of Health Policy at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine on those who neither have the money for large care expenses nor qualify for free or low-income clinics: "The middle class has extraordinarily expensive care...and [they're] doing things on a shoestring."
Designing policy and creating political will
Tene Franklin, Vice President of Diversity Equity and Inclusion for Health Leads discusses finding common ground at the Axios roundtable. Photo: Adam Sanner for Axios

The importance of creating change at the policy level was a significant part of the wider conversation and drew the most debate over how to address both the causes and impact of health inequity.

  • Senator Bo Watson, District-11 of Tennessee on the governance challenges from his perspective: "We’re constrained by the financial reality of what we have. Should I focus my resources on social determinants? Or care? What do we do with the dollar we have? The legislature has had a conversation about a Block Grant...[and will be] submitting an application for this grant in the next month."
  • Tene Franklin, Vice President of Diversity Equity and Inclusion at Health Leads on finding common ground: "Tennessee is 42nd in overall health on a national scale. What do we value? What are opportunities to learn from progress?"

Thank you Delta Dental Institute for sponsoring this event.

Go deeper

Updated 14 hours ago - Technology

From Malcolm X to "Free Britney," new media shapes the justice system

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

True crime documentaries, podcasts and social media campaigns are bringing new attention to real-world legal proceedings — and are often affecting the outcome.

Why it matters: New media platforms can instantly put a national spotlight on cases that have long been forgotten or buried under red tape.

Updated 16 hours ago - Health

The next big bottleneck in the global vaccination effort

Illustration: Rae Cook/Axios

The world still needs more coronavirus vaccines, but an additional bottleneck has emerged in many low-income countries: They need help getting shots in arms.

Why it matters: Increasing vaccination rates across the world is both a humanitarian necessity and the best way to prevent dangerous new variants from emerging, but it increasingly requires complex problem-solving.

Updated 17 hours ago - Health

COVID-19 Omicron variant cases identified in Europe, U.K.

People wearing masks walk in London on Nov. 25. Photo: Li Ying/Xinhua via Getty Images

Health officials in the United Kingdom, Italy and Germany announced on Saturday that they've detected the first known cases of the new COVID-19 Omicron variant.

Why it matters: The discoveries come as the world scrambles to respond to concerns over the new variant, discovered in South Africa earlier this week.