Tuesday, October 17, 2017
► In today’s Spokesman-Review — Hospitals accused of billing the poor instead of offering state-mandated charity care — Washington’s attorney general filed lawsuits against hospitals in Tacoma and Olympia last month, accusing them of withholding charity care from thousands of low-income patients. The suits say low-income patients at St. Joseph Medical Center in Tacoma and Capital Medical Center in Olympia were subjected to aggressive tactics, such as being required to pay hundreds of dollars before they could have surgeries. The patients weren’t told they could be eligible for free or reduced-cost care, as required by state law. The litigation follows a similar lawsuit filed in June against the former owner of two Spokane-area hospitals: Deaconess and Valley.
► In today’s Seattle Times — Boeing rivals Airbus, Bombardier join forces on CSeries jet seen as threat to 737 — Boeing’s aggressive attempt to stop sales of the Bombardier CSeries jet in the U.S. by government intervention seemed to backfire Monday when European giant Airbus stepped in to say it will acquire a majority stake in the Canadian aircraft and set up an assembly line to build the planes in the U.S. in Mobile, Ala.
► In the Seattle Times — ‘They let him lay there’: Family wants answers from Boeing on death of Seattle employee — Roger Sanders’ family is getting little information from Boeing about why it took an hour and 24 minutes for the overnight-shift maintenance engineer to reach a hospital from the plant after he suffered a head injury.
► In today’s Seattle Times — Republican Dino Rossi piles up cash advantage over Democrats to succeed U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert — Republican Dino Rossi pulled in more than $578,000 in nine days after announcing his bid to succeed retiring U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert in Washington’s 8th Congressional District — more than double the money raised by any of the lesser-known Democrats in the race.
► In the Seattle Times — 70,000 Washingtonians face higher insurance costs after Trump order, officials say — Trump’s latest effort to dismantle Obamacare has led 18 states — including Washington — to sue to keep subsidies that reduce health insurance costs for some consumers.
► In today’s Washington Post — States scramble for solutions for insurers that were counting on Affordable Care Act payments — The White House announced it was ending the payments last week, but insurers are still obligated to sell the plans and would now like to make up the difference by raising premiums.
► From KING TV — New pressure on Sen. Murray’s bipartisan health care talks — The Trump administration’s announcement that it will end Obamacare subsidies puts new pressure on Washington Sen. Patty Murray to help devise a bipartisan fix.
► From The Hill — GOP rep breaks with Trump: Cutting health-care subsidies does ‘opposite’ of what he promised — Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.) said that cutting subsidy payments to ObamaCare insurers will mean more of her constituents will be uninsured. “POTUS promised more access, affordable coverage,” Ros-Lehtinen tweeted. “This does opposite.”
► In today’s NY Times — Deep in Trump Country, a big stake in health care — Medical care is the job engine in an area in Arkansas that strongly backed President Trump, and the cloud over the Affordable Care Act has left residents uneasy.
► From The Hill — Trump doubles down on tough immigration proposals — President Trump on Monday praised his administration’s work on immigration enforcement and border security, saying he’s “going to take it five steps further.”
ALSO at The Stand — Court tees up right-wing assault on unions (by David Groves)
► From Slate — Compelled association (by Daniel Horwitz) — If the Supreme Court thinks nonmembers can’t be compelled to pay union fees, then unions can’t be compelled to represent nonmembers.
► From The Hill — AFL-CIO says repealing Jones Act would cost jobs — In a letter to senators, the AFL-CIO said that repealing the Jones Act would open up the U.S. maritime industry to low-wage foreign workers and weaken the country’s ability to respond independently to crises and disasters.
ALSO at The Stand — Jones Act isn’t the problem in Puerto Rico
The Stand posts links to Washington state and national news of interest every weekday morning by 10 a.m.