There has been a conversation within several of West Virginia’s nonprofit organizations on how to address Maternal Morbidity. Obviously, no one wants to see unnecessary deaths if they can be prevented, especially if the reason is that the individual simply cannot afford their postpartum care and are therefore not receiving the healthcare they need.Read more
The U.S. House of Representatives formally passed the final version of the American Rescue Plan legislative package today. This package will provide much-need financial relief to our nation as we continue to confront the COVID-19 pandemic. President Biden is expected to sign the Act into law on Friday, March 12th.
Medicaid Presumptive Eligibility – Good Policy for West Virginia
A bill was introduced in the West Virginia legislature which would eliminate Medicaid presumptive eligibility for adults at hospitals. SB 354, introduced by Senator Chandler Swope (R - Mercer, 06), is just a plain bad bill that would take away a very good policy for low-income West Virginians.
State Legislature Considers Bill to Help Cap Costs for West Virginians with Diabetes
Living with diabetes is an expensive proposition. It is estimated that one in four health care dollars is spent on diabetes related issues. West Virginia took two steps forward in the 2020 legislative session to address high prescription drug costs for West Virginia families, both with bipartisan support:
- The legislature passed the “Requiring Accountable Pharmaceutical Transparency, Oversight, and Reporting Act” law which requires drug manufacturers and health benefit plan issuers who sell prescription drugs in West Virginia to provide cost information, changes in cost information, and prescription drug statistics to the State Auditor who will publish the data on a public website in June 2021.
- The legislature passed a private insurance insulin copayment cap of $100 per month.
Every year I get very excited about the state legislative session – which started a little later this year on February 10. We all have our lists of great bills we hope to move through the legislative process. This is democracy in action! And of course with COVID-19 it is going to take the virtue of patience with virtual!
The Medicaid program exists in every state in the nation. Yet there is an old saying among Medicaid advocates, “Once you are an expert on one state’s Medicaid program, you know all there is to know about one state’s Medicaid program.” Every state Medicaid program is unique. States have tremendous flexibility in designing their Medicaid programs. West Virginia can change many aspects of Medicaid in our state at any time.
I want to be the first to welcome everyone to West Virginia for Affordable Health Care’s new website! 2020 has shown us that we all live online and--just in time--we are starting 2021 with a new, user friendly space where we can share the latest information on the policies at the state and local level. We hope you find this easy to navigate and filled with useful information.
During the COVID-19 crisis stresses have increased as we all care for our families, friends, and communities. The people at TEAM For West Virginia Children have compiled this information for sharing, thank you TEAM.
Upon arrival to an accident, firefighters are taught to wait for their incident commander to get a quick assessment of the situation, get their safety gear on (“donning” in fireman lingo), and then jump directly into their rolls such as lineman, the one who leads the charge with the hose.
The day before the West Virginia Insulin Caravan, Roxy Vasil, age 17, was donning his Personal Protective Equipment (PPE - the jacket and pants firefighters wear) and his Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA). Roxy was taking his practical skills test for Hazmat Awareness and Standards of Procedures training. Roxy joined the Cheat Lake Volunteer Fire Department back in March of 2019 and has been enjoying his time there with the goal of “giving back and serving the community.” When he joined the bus to head to Canada, Roxy did the smart thing and went to the back of the bus, taking a seat next to three emergency exits within arm’s reach. That way he could best help if there was an accident.
Roxy on the right in part of his Class C from hazmat training.
By Julianne Yacovone, Coordinator of Child Health, West Virginians for Affordable Health Care
I’m not a native of West Virginia. I have an outsider’s perspective on the struggle she state faces—such as poverty and poor health. I’ve come to find West Virginians to be considerably generous and receiving people. Regardless of the challenges they may be facing, they will go out of their way to help you. The statehas faced no shortage of hardships: battling a statewide drug crisis, food shortages, and a lack of mental health care resources have taken a significant toll on its population. In areas where we lead other states, it tends to be in the worst ways. We are first in obesity, type 2 diabetes, Cancer, and drug-induced deaths according to Trust for America’s Health data. West Virginia is also the top state for child removals, according to the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources WVDHHR, with a shocking 85% of those removals being drug related. Nearly 6800 of West Virginia’s kids were placed in foster care in the month of August, 2019 alone.Read more
JENNY'S MEDICAID STORY: “LOOKING BACK, IF I DID NOT HAVE MEDICAID, I WOULD BE DEAD. IT SAVED MY LIFE.”
Meeting Jenny during her lunch break at her public service job was inspiring to say the least. As I listened to her story of pregnancy, cancer survival, job challenges, raising children, and taking care of her aging mother, I was reminded of so many other West Virginians who face multiple choices and challenges to keep their family and themselves healthy.
Paul Smith, long-time West Virginia advocate for the rights of people with disabilities, has worked closely with WV Together for Medicaid to protect the program from federal and state attacks and funding cuts.