Kim Krisberg

Kim Krisberg is a freelance public health writer living in Austin, Texas, and has been writing about public health for more than a decade. You can reach her at kkrisberg@yahoo.com.

With the future of the Affordable Care Act still up in the air, most of the news coverage has gone to insurance coverage, premiums and Medicaid. And rightly so. But also included in the massive health reform law were a number of innovative measures to improve the quality and value of the medical care we actually get in the doctor’s office. With repeal still on the table, those measures are at risk too.

In 2011, Texas legislators slashed the state’s family planning budget by 67 percent. The justification? To reduce abortions by defunding clinics associated with an abortion provider (read: Planned Parenthood). Now, it turns out Texas legislators actually accomplished the opposite: narrowing access to family planning services only led to more unplanned pregnancies and more abortions.

Occupational Health News Roundup

Uber’s new insurance plan won’t do much to protect its injured workers; investigation finds 1,000 additional black lung cases in Appalachia; Washington state welcomes a new paid family leave law; and St. Louis workers face a pay cut after state legislators overturn the city’s minimum wage hike.

Occupational Health News Roundup

Five-part series investigates worker safety and lax accountability at nuclear facilities; workers at port trucking companies in Southern California report conditions mirroring indentured servitude; seventh journalist murdered in Mexico since beginning of 2017; and a new farmworkers union is born in Washington.

In Cuyahoga County, Ohio, nearly 200 people have died from opioid-related overdoses in the first five months of this year. That means that this one U.S. county is on pace to lose more than 700 people to fatal overdoses by the end of 2017.

The House and Senate health care bills are overflowing with proposals that will strip Americans of access to quality, affordable health care. But perhaps the cruelest part is what they do to children — the most vulnerable and powerless among us. Children can’t show up at the ballot box to protect their health and so it truly is up to the rest of us.

This is the harsh reality of the Senate health care bill: it provides tax cuts to the wealthiest Americans, while taking away access to timely medical care from the poorest, most vulnerable Americans. You’ve probably been hearing this point a lot about the GOP’s repeal-and-replace efforts, and it’s easy to relegate it to partisan hyperbole.…

Despite glowing reviews from the House GOP about their health care bill, the people that actually crunch the numbers say it’ll likely mean millions more uninsured and higher premiums for people in poorer health. Now comes more bad news: it’ll also result in more than 900,000 lost jobs and billions in lost state revenue.

Occupational Health News Roundup

Indonesian workers who make Ivanka Trump’s clothing line report poverty wages and unjust working conditions; Colorado lawmakers adopt law providing workers’ comp for injured workers; Trump administration rescinds more Obama-era labor rules; and Walmart workers report being punished for taking sick leave.

Last year’s emergency Zika funding is about to run out and there’s no new money in the pipeline. It’s emblematic of the kind of short-term, reactive policymaking that public health officials have been warning us about for years. Now, as we head into summer, public health again faces a dangerous, highly complex threat along with an enormous funding gap.