Trending News Today: Middle Class Health Care Burden Grows

Top news of the day from across the health care landscape.

The FDA called for all donated blood to be screened for the Zika virus, including states where the virus is not circulating. According to The New York Times, this call to action is an acknowledgment that sexual transmission may fuel the spread of the virus, even in areas with mosquitoes that do not carry the Zika virus. Furthermore, the FDA wanted to prepare for the potential of the viral clusters from reappearing in the future in the United States.

Although overall health care spending has begun to slow, the financial burden in the middle class is increasing, reported The Wall Street Journal. The Altarum Institute reported that in June, overall health care spending across the economy landscape reached 18.2% of gross domestic product, an increase from 13.3% in 2000.

Obamacare enrollment has fallen short by less than half the initial forecast, reported The Washington Post. There have been several insurance company giants who have taken significant financial hits, causing them to stop offering health plans in certain markets. The initial forecast by the administration painted a picture of a wide variety of health plans for consumers to choose from. But according to Cynthia Cox from the Kaiser Family Foundation, next year, more than 1 in 4 counties are at risk of having a single insurer on its exchange. Although there is debate over the predicament Obamacare is in, the root of the problem remains that the success of the law depends fundamentally on exchanges being profitable for insurers, which requires more individuals to sign up, according to the Post.