Apr 11, 2019

Senate Republicans introduce bill protecting pre-existing conditions

Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Several GOP senators introduced a new bill to protect people with pre-existing conditions yesterday, including several senators who are up for re-election next year.

What's new: The bill is an enhanced version of one introduced by Sen. Thom Tillis (R-N.C.) last year; unlike last year's, it requires insurance companies to cover treatment of an enrollee's pre-existing conditions.

Details: Both bills require insurers to cover people with pre-existing conditions and prohibit them from charging sick people higher premiums.

My thought bubble: This bill is a reminder of the awkward politics Republicans find themselves facing on health care.

  • While the DOJ is arguing that the entire Affordable Care Act — including its pre-existing conditions protections — should be struck down, the party knows that these protections have become popular with voters.

Go deeper ... Trump flips: For now, GOP is no longer the "party of health care"

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Mass shooting in Milwaukee: What we know so far

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett in 2012. Photo: John Gress/Corbis via Getty Images

Six people died in a shooting at the Molson Coors Brewing Company in Milwaukee Molson Coors on Wednesday, including the 51-year-old gunman, Mayor Tom Barrett told reporters at an evening press conference with local police.

Details: All of the victims worked at the brewery complex, as did the shooter who died of "an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound, police confirmed in a statement late Wednesday.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus updates: U.S. probes case with no clear links, virus hits more countries

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

The CDC said Wednesday "astute" U.S. clinicians found the novel coronavirus in a person who did not recently return from a foreign country nor knowingly have contact with anyone infected, as six more countries reported their first cases.

The big picture: COVID-19 has killed more than 2,800 people and infected over 82,000 others. The number of new cases reported outside China exceeded those inside the country for the first time on Tuesday, the WHO said Wednesday. South Korea has the most, with 1,595 infections confirmed by Wednesday night. Europe's biggest outbreak is in Italy, where 453 cases have been confirmed.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 2 hours ago - Health

WHO official leads criticism of Trump's coronavirus response

President Trump with members of the new coronavirus task force, including Vice President Mike Pence at the White House on Wednesday. Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, special advisor to the director general of the World Health Organization, told MSNBC Wednesday he found "most" of what President Trump said at his briefing on the novel coronavirus "incoherent."

The big picture: As the number of confirmed cases reaches 60 in the U.S., the top health professional — who was a health policy adviser in the Obama administration — is among several leading figures, in particular, Democrats, to criticize the president for his response to the outbreak.

Go deeperArrow2 hours ago - Health