Today’s NewsStand – May 9, 2018

Featuring hospital and health care headlines from the media and the Web.

Iowa News

Iowa counties vote to accept Woodbury County to region in 2019
Woodbury County secured admission Tuesday to the Rolling Hills regional mental health group as two additional smaller counties voted to accept Iowa’s fifth largest county. At a news conference, Woodbury County officials celebrated news that board of supervisors in Sac and Calhoun counties had voted to accept Woodbury as a Rolling Hills Community Service Region member starting on July 1, 2019. Five of the seven member counties have now ratified a deal the Rolling Hills’ governing board earlier negotiated with Woodbury County. (Sioux City Journal)

Sioux County deputies now have AEDs
The Sioux County Sheriff’s Office has received 12 Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) through a cooperative grant made available through the 3A Emergency Preparedness Coalition. Sioux County Chief Deputy Nate Huizenga says since Sioux County Deputies are often the first to arrive at a call, there was a gap in the availability of AEDs. He says now that gap has been filled, since all twelve of his agency’s patrol deputies now have an AED in their patrol vehicle. Sioux County deputies are trained in the use of the AEDs, along with their CPR recertification training every two years. (KIWA)

Poll shows Hubbell opening wide lead in Iowa Democratic race
A new poll of Iowa Democrats suggests the party will choose a nominee in the June 5 primary, not at the state convention later that month. Retired Des Moines businessman Fred Hubbell leads the six-person field with 46 percent of those polled. State Senator Nate Boulton, also of Des Moines, captured 20 percent in the poll. Union president Cathy Glasson was third with 7 percent, followed by former Obama administration staffer John Norris at 5 percent, physician Andy McGuire, 3 percent and university diversity officer Ross Wilburn, 1 percent. The remaining 18 percent were undecided. (Quad-City Times)

National News

Congress leery of Trump’s cuts to children’s health program
President Donald Trump’s proposal to roll back $7 billion from the popular Children’s Health Insurance Program drew immediate bipartisan concern Tuesday, an indication of the hurdles the effort to cut federal spending will face in the Senate. The proposed cuts to the children’s health program quickly emerged as the most contentious element of Mr. Trump’s request that Congress rescind about $15 billion in funds that had been previously authorized but not spent. (Wall Street Journal)

Illinois wins Medicaid flexibility under Trump
Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner has received federal approval to use $2 billion in Medicaid funding differently. The state plans to boost behavioral health services and combat the fast-paced opioid crisis as part of the new Better Care Illinois Behavioral Health Initiative. The governor is betting his latest health care initiative will save the state money by getting Medicaid recipients help earlier, particularly those caught up in the nationwide opioid epidemic. In Illinois, the crisis is filling hospital emergency rooms and treatment centers. (Modern Healthcare)

Obamacare premiums to surge next year, early requests show
The first glimpse of what health-insurance companies plan to charge for Obamacare plans next year suggests there’s no relief ahead for consumers saddled with high premiums. Many health plans have stopped selling health coverage through the exchanges created four years ago under Obamacare. The Republican-led attempt to overturn the health law last year caused premiums to surge, as insurers expected that undoing the law’s requirement that all Americans have health insurance would leave them with a smaller and sicker pool of clients. (Bloomberg)

House panel OKs plan to grow VA private care, a Trump pledge
A House committee approved a wide-ranging plan Tuesday to give veterans more freedom to see doctors outside the Veterans Affairs health system and fix a budget crisis in its troubled Choice private-sector program, a major step toward fulfilling President Donald Trump’s promise to expand private care options. The $51 billion plan includes $5.2 billion to avert a catastrophic shutdown of Choice. The program is slated to run out of money as early as May 31, causing disruptions in medical care to tens of thousands of patients. (Associated Press/ABC News)