Insurers are increasingly requiring patients to receive preapprovals for drugs or medical care, but even if the care is approved, that doesn't mean the insurer will necessarily pay, Kaiser Health News reports.

Why it matters: If an insurer decides not to pay for the care after the fact, that leaves patients on the hook for what can be huge medical bills.

Details: The preapprovals, often called prior authorization, may include a note that they're not a guarantee of payment, leaving insurers free to change their minds.

  • Patients also may be told that no prior authorization is required for a procedure, only to be told after they have it done that the insurer did want a prior authorization in this case — and thus isn't paying the bill.

The big picture: Prior authorization is already a controversial practice; providers say it's unnecessarily burdensome, while insurers say the practice helps to cut back on waste and excess costs.

The bottom line: Turns out there's yet another way for patients to receive a surprise medical bill.

Go deeper: Health insurers are eating higher medical costs

Go deeper

2020 could decide fate of Keystone and Dakota Access pipelines

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Two new court actions — one by the Supreme Court and another by a federal judge — together highlight and raise the energy stakes of November's election.

Why it matters: The legal actions mean the results of the 2020 election could very well decide the fate of Keystone XL and Dakota Access, two projects at the heart of battles over fossil fuel infrastructure.

Updated 24 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9 a.m. ET: 11,648,268 — Total deaths: 538,828 — Total recoveries — 6,328,930Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9 a.m. ET: 2,938,750 — Total deaths: 130,310 — Total recoveries: 924,148 — Total tested: 36,032,329Map.
  3. Axios-Ipsos Coronavirus Index: Our response is becoming more polarized.
  4. Business: Rising cases pause U.S. economic recovery — Hospitals, doctors are major recipients of PPP loans.

Pompeo: Trump administration is "looking at" TikTok ban

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told Fox News' Laura Ingraham on Monday that the Trump administration is "looking at" a ban on Chinese social media app TikTok.

Why it matters: Lawmakers have long expressed fears that the Chinese government could use TikTok to harvest reams of data from Americans — and actions against the app have recently accelerated worldwide, highlighted by India's ban.