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Health care is a top concern for many American families - and for good reason. Health care spending in the United States accounts for 17.9 percent of the nation's GDP, and medical bills are the number one reason for American bankruptcies. Prescription drug prices are a huge factor in those costs - in recent years, pharmaceutical companies and pharmacy benefi managers (PBMs) have rapidly increased prices. Additionally, new drugs have reached the market with price tags that easily exceed most Americans' annual income. Americans spent approximately $323 billion on prescription medicines in 2016, with some estimates of spending reaching over $400 billion by 2021. Fortunately, there are many policy options for states to address prescription drug prices.
This report examines the basic expenses Ohio families face, to better understand why so many Ohioans cannot afford to purchase insurance or pay their growing portion of costs for premiums, co-pays, costsharing, deductibles and prescriptions.
The opioid crisis is ravaging communities across the nation and tearing families apart. The crisis has reached epidemic proportions with an estimated 2.6 million experiencing opioid drug abuse. The epidemic has had a detrimental impact in all parts of the country, claiming tens of thousands of victims each year and costing our nation billions of dollars in social, legal, and health care costs. In 1991, doctors wrote 76 million opioid prescriptions. By 2011, that number had nearly tripled to 219 million. Despite a modest drop in the number of opioid prescriptions since 2012, the number of deaths associated with abuse and overdose continues to rise; the mortality rate has quintupled since 1999, and opioid overdoses resulted in over 42,000 deaths in 2016.
The power of local governments to pass laws that protect the health, safety and welfare of their citizens is waning and under increasing attack. Over the past four years, a historic number of local interference (preemption) bills have been filed and passed in state capitals across the country. Over time, these bills, crafted to strip local governments of their power to act on everything from fracking bans to anti-discrimination measures, have become wider in scope and more hostile to home rule. More industries and special interest groups now consider preemption a legislative imperative, including the oil and gas industry and groups opposing LGBTQ rights.
Anchor institutions are place-based entities such as universities and hospitals that are tied to their surroundings by mission, invested capital, or relationships to customers, employees, and vendors. These local human and economic relationships link institution well-being to that of the community in which it is anchored. Increasingly, anchor institutions across the nation are realizing this interdependence and are expanding their public or nonprofit mission to incorporate what we call an "anchor mission." In other words, they are consciously applying their long-term, place-based economic power, in combination with their human and intellectual resources, to better the long-term welfare of the communities in which they reside.
Chester, Pennsylvania, a small, formerly industrial city located on the Delaware River, not far from Philadelphia, exemplifies the problems and possibilities faced by older manufacturing cities across the United States, especially in the Northeast and Midwest. Chester's problems of poverty, stagnation, and unemployment stem from the late 20th-century decline of an industrial economy in the United States - which in Chester was primarily centered on automobile manufacturing and shipbuilding - and the flight of the more affluent residents to the suburbs. The remaining residents face high poverty, high unemployment, a crumbling infrastructure, lack of services and businesses, and underperforming schools. There is hope, however. Although the Federal Reserve Bank classifies Chester as a "struggling city," Chester also embodies the possibilities in the concept of resilience defined as "the individual and collective capacity to respond to adversity and change." The project of turning Chester around is a work in progress, but Chester is also a community that has taken intentional action "to enhance the personal and collective capacity of its citizens and institutions to respond to and influence the course of social and economic change." In fact, Chester, and one of its key partners in community revitalization, Widener University, can serve as a case study of what building resilience can look like in the face of daunting challenges.
More than 40 million Americans still do not have access to paid sick time, and these numbers are concentrated among the lowest-wage workers - 80 percent of whom lack access. The health impacts on employees and on the workplace can be jarring; those without paid sick days are 1.5 times more likely to report to work sick than those with paid sick days. During the H1N1 outbreak of 2009, for instance, eight million Americans reported to work ill - infecting as many as seven million of their co-workers. Meanwhile, allowing employees to stay at home with even one paid "flu day" would allow them to recover and could reduce flu transmission by an estimated 25 percent.
Many policies that help make healthier foods available to families start locally. But what if your state lawmakers suddenly passed legislation that took away the ability of community members, city councils, school districts, and counties to help prevent heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes? Some states have already passed laws that stop, limit, or discourage local communities from enacting commonsense policy solutions that help create environments where families have increased access to healthy foods; positive changes for communities that are proven to help all kids grow up at a healthy weight and prevent disease.
This policy brieft evaluates the economic benefits for each county in California due to the state's expansion of Medicaid to low-income adults are were not currently eligible for Medi-Cal coverage. They find it will not only impove health outcomes but will provide an economic boost to the state in a large variety of industries.
Anchor institutions (often referred to as \"eds and meds\") are place-based enterprises, firmly rooted in their locales. In addition to universities and hospitals, anchors may include cultural institutions (such as museums), health care facilities (such as nursing homes), and municipal governments. Typically, anchors tend to be nonprofit corporations. Because they are rooted in place (unlike for-profit corporations that may relocate for a variety of reasons, such as lower labor costs, more subsidies, or fewer environmental regulations), anchors have, at least in principle, an economic self-interest in helping ensure that the communities in which they are based are safe, vibrant, and healthy.