Photo: Artur Widak/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Walmart is requiring employees to travel to specific, well-regarded hospitals for spinal procedures, in a bid to cut down on its health care costs, the Wall Street Journal reported yesterday.

What's happening: Walmart is paying for surgery at some big-name systems, including the Mayo Clinic and Geisinger, while slashing what it will pay closer to employees’ homes. Adding the extra hurdle has helped cut down on unnecessary procedures, for which physical therapy might be just as effective, per WSJ. Of course, it’s also a big hoop to jump through for employees who are in pain and legitimately need surgery.

Flashback: Walmart previously tried to excise the lowest-quality providers from its health care network, but was thwarted by hospitals’ all-or-nothing contracts.

The big picture: If the country’s biggest private employer is having this hard of a time driving high-value care, that’s not a great sign for the rest of us, or for the system as a whole.

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Pre-bunking rises ahead of the 2020 election

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Tech platforms are no longer satisfied with debunking falsehoods — now they're starting to invest in efforts that preemptively show users accurate information to help them counter falsehoods later on.

Why it matters: Experts argue that pre-bunking can be a more effective strategy for combative misinformation than fact-checking. It's also a less polarizing way to address misinformation than trying to apply judgements to posts after they've been shared.

Kendall Baker, author of Sports
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Courtesy: Betty Labs

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