Good morning. Today's word count is 832, or ~3 minutes.
More than half of all issue advertising this year has been on health care, and that spending will only increase as the 2020 campaign gets closer, Axios' Sara Fischer and I report.
Between the lines: Most of the top health care spenders are focused on policy changes being considered on issues like surprise medical bills and drug prices — many of which would cut into the health care industry's profits.
Where it stands: The biggest spender by far is a dark-money group called Doctor Patient Unity.
Health care was a winning issue for Democrats in 2018, but they're not spending much on health care messaging right now.
Yes, but: Democrats will surely spend more time and money on health care deeper into the 2020 cycle.
The uninsured rate increased last year. One likely reason: people became too well-off to qualify for Medicaid, but were left with no other options.
Driving the news: Roughly 27.5 million people, or 8.5% of the U.S. population, had no health insurance at some point in 2018, according to figures released from the U.S. Census Bureau yesterday.
What they're saying: "There are fewer people in poverty and more people working, but the jobs low-income people are getting often don't come with health benefits. So, job-based health insurance isn't growing, even in an economy with low unemployment," the Kaiser Family Foundation's Larry Levitt tweeted.
People were vastly overcharged for health insurance over the past 3 years, which will result in insurers rebating $1.3 billion back to patients and employers this year, according to experts at the Kaiser Family Foundation.
Winners: People who bought Affordable Care Act coverage will benefit the most, with 58% of the refunded dollars going toward people in that market.
The bottom line: The ACA capped how much profit health insurers could keep, before rebating the excess, and this rebated amount is a record.
Fighting fraud "is not a top priority" for major insurers, ProPublica reports, because they can just pass along the cost of wasteful spending to enrollees and employers.
Case in point: In California's 14 largest counties, which cover 80% of the state's population, prosecutors filed charges in only 22 fraud cases referred by a commercial insurer in 2017 and 2018 combined.
Investigating fraud can be costly for insurers — both financially and in terms of their relationships with providers.
Why it matters: Experts say fraud likely accounts for 10% of U.S. health costs.
Related, by ProPublica: How to Make Health Insurers Take Fraud Seriously
Kansas health authorities confirmed on Tuesday that a sixth person has died from a lung-related illness linked to vaping, according to the Washington Post.
What's happening: There are 450 possible cases of the illnesses across 33 states, and deaths have occurred in Kansas, Indiana, Minnesota, California, Oregon and Illinois, per the Post.