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Black Medicare Beneficiaries Are More Likely Than White Beneficiaries to Have Cost-Related Problems with Their Health Care, Across both Traditional Medicare and in Medicare Advantage Plans

Among people with Medicare, Black beneficiaries are more likely to have cost-related problems with their health care than White beneficiaries, finds a new KFF analysis, with the racial disparity persisting among beneficiaries in both traditional Medicare and Medicare Advantage plans. While 17 percent of all Medicare beneficiaries, or about 1…

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Cost-Related Problems Are Less Common Among Beneficiaries in Traditional Medicare Than in Medicare Advantage, Mainly Due to Supplemental Coverage

This analysis examines health care cost-related problems among Medicare beneficiaries, comparing beneficiaries in traditional Medicare, including those with and without supplemental coverage, to those in Medicare Advantage, with a focus on racial equity. We compare rates of cost-related problems among White, Black, and Hispanic beneficiaries, those in fair or poor health, and those under age 65 with long-term disabilities. The measure of cost-related problems include problems getting care due to cost, delays seeking care due to cost, and problems paying medical bills among people with Medicare.

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Medication Abortion and Telemedicine: Innovations and Barriers During the COVID-19 Emergency

This post looks at a new contactless method of providing medication abortions and now this can be and has been used in response to the pandemic. The post also examines state policies that act as barriers to implementing these new protocols.

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Are Health Centers Facilitating Equitable Access to COVID-19 Vaccinations? A June 2021 Update.

This analysis updates earlier work and examines the extent to which vaccination efforts through community health centers are reaching people of color using data from the federal government’s weekly Health Center COVID-19 Survey. We include data from the survey weeks of January 8 through May 21, 2021, finding that people of color made up the majority of people who received vaccinations at community health centers.

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Mental Health and Substance Use Considerations Among Children During the COVID-19 Pandemic

This brief explores factors contributing to poor mental health and substance use outcomes among children during the pandemic, highlighting groups of children who are particularly at risk and barriers to accessing child and adolescent mental health care.

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The Pandemic’s Impact on Children’s Mental Health

The pandemic has taken a heavy toll on the nation’s mental health, and a new issue brief shows that children are also facing worsening emotional and cognitive health. The brief examines factors contributing to worsening mental health and substance use outcomes among children and adolescents during the pandemic, looking closely…

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More Than 1 in 4 Medicare Beneficiaries Had a Telehealth Visit Between the Summer and Fall of 2020

As the coronavirus pandemic kept people home last year, just over 1 in 4 Medicare beneficiaries had a telehealth visit with a doctor or other health professional between the summer and fall of 2020, a new KFF analysis finds. Once limited to beneficiaries living in rural areas, coverage of telehealth…

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Medicare and Telehealth: Coverage and Use During the COVID-19 Pandemic and Options for the Future

This brief provides an overview of changes in coverage of telehealth under traditional Medicare before the coronavirus pandemic, and estimates changes in use of telehealth services using survey data from the Medicare Current Beneficiary Survey (MCBS) during the pandemic. The analysis also discusses issues and questions related to extending telehealth coverage under traditional Medicare beyond the public health emergency.

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The Pandemic Has Exacerbated Long-Standing Health Care Challenges Faced By Puerto Rico and Other U.S. Territories as the End of Temporary Federal Medicaid Funding Approaches

A new KFF analysis examines how the coronavirus pandemic is affecting U.S. territories as well as issues related to the upcoming expiration of temporary Medicaid funding for the territories at the end of September. Prior to the pandemic, the U.S territories –– American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana…

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Challenges in the U.S. Territories: COVID-19 and the Medicaid Financing Cliff

More than a year into the public health emergency, the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact the lives of Americans including those living in the U.S. territories. Differences in Medicaid financing, including a statutory cap and match rate, have contributed to broader fiscal and health systems challenges for the territories. While additional federal funds have been provided over the statutory caps, these funds are set to expire at the end of September 2021. Without additional Congressional action, the territories will lose the vast majority of Medicaid financing which could result in reductions in coverage, services, and provider rates which could negatively impact the territories as they deal with the long-term health and economic consequences of the pandemic. This brief looks at how the pandemic is affecting the territories as well as issues related to the upcoming Medicaid fiscal cliff.

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in San Francisco, California.