Trending Healthcare News: Opposition in Senate May Prevent Healthcare Reform

Top news of the day from across the healthcare landscape.

Yesterday, Sens Mike Lee (R-UT) and Jerry Moran (R-KS) announced opposition to the Better Care Reconciliation Act, according to The New York Times. Previously, Sens Rand Paul (R-KY) and Susan Collins (R-ME) said they do not support the bill. With a total of 4 GOP senators in opposition to healthcare reform legislation, Senate leaders may choose to rewrite the bill or work with democrats to revise the Affordable Care Act (ACA), according to the article. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) acknowledged that immediate plans to repeal the ACA would not be successful, but they plan to pursue the matter later, the Times reported.

Hospitals in rural communities have been limiting their services, shuttering maternity wards or closing their doors to all patients due to financial hardships, which may increase risks for pregnant women, according to Reuters. Between 2004 and 2014, more than 200 maternity wards closed due to high costs, less births, and staffing problems. These closures left 54% of rural communities without hospital-based obstetrics, according to the article. Despite the ACA aiming to help rural hospitals, unpaid patient debt increased and contributed to the closure of these departments and hospitals.

California recently started phasing out older trucks and requiring pollution-control equipment to prevent health and environmental problems. Regulators and environmentalists are concerned that without further reduction in emissions, individuals who live near truck routes have a high risk of cancer, cardiovascular disease, asthma, and other lung diseases, according to California Healthline. These effects may be especially pronounced in children and older adults.