September 9, 2009 — Tonight at 7:00, President Obama will address a joint session of Congress about his health care reform proposal. Obama is promising to offer more details about his vision for overhauling the $2.5 trillion U.S. healthcare system. Minnesota Public Radio News will provide live coverage of the address. One of the people who will be in the audience tonight in Washington is Jeffrey Korsmo, the Executive Director of the Mayo Clinic Health Policy Center. He was invited to attend the speech by DFL Congressman Tim Walz. Korsmo says he's eager to hear more about Obama's plan. That is Jeffrey Korsmo, Executive Director of the Mayo Clinic Health Policy Center. He will be in the Capitol tonight when President Obama makes his health care reform speech.
June 19, 2009 — Congressional Democrats stumbled out of the starting blocks unveiling their healthcare reform bills today. They're struggling to find ways to pay for insuring the nation's uninsured. The House bill would create a federal plan to compete with private insurers. The Senate's proposal would create non-profit insurance co-ops that provide coverage. But, an advocacy group representing 14-thousand doctors says a "single payer" health insurance program would cover every American without adding costs.
March 4, 2009 — Healthcare is one of the fastest-growing costs for Minnesota government. Governor Tim Pawlenty says it's critical to slow the growth in healthcare spending. He wants to reduce the cost of Minnesota Care, the state-funded insurance program. He's also proposing cuts to medicaid reimbursements. This week, Minnesota Public Radio is exploring the effects of the state budget crisis from the perspective of one community, Fergus Falls. It's the largest city in Otter Tail County. This is the latest installment in our series, "The State Budget in Your Backyard." As Dan Gunderson reports, balancing the state budget could mean big changes for the people covered by Minnesota Care and the hospitals that treat them.
December 29, 2008 — An initiative to make northwestern Minnesota hospitals more efficient is spreading across the state. It's called Lean Health and it uses the same ideas companies like Marvin Windows and Arctic Cat use to streamline assembly line production. Those companies are trying to encourage hospitals to use the same ideas. Minnesota Public Radio's Dan Gunderson visited one hospital where the assembly line efficiency model is working for healthcare.
November 24, 2008 — DFL U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar will convene national health care leaders for a summit in Minneapolis this week (TUES). Klobuchar says she organized the event to give industry leaders an opportunity to discuss ways to strengthen America's health care system, including Medicare. She says the goal of the summit is to examine how to offer quality healthcare at an affordable price.
July 17, 2008 — We've been talking with Trisha Dillion, a healthcare consultant in Rochester, Minnesota, Steve Piragis, who owns an outfitter in Ely, Minnesota... and Jon Zitur, who works for a large local lumber company in Minneapolis, Minnesota. They are among a group of people we've selected from around Minnesota to give us a first-hand perspective on the effects of the economic slowdown. We'll be checking in with them periodically over the coming months.
January 23, 2007 — Later tonight, we'll bring you live coverage of President Bush's seventh State of the Union Address. In the speech, the President is expected to highlight a healthcare plan that would provide Americans with a tax deduction to help cover insurance costs. Some Democrats are already saying the President's plan doesn't do enough to help the nation's 47 million uninsured. Health economists like the University of Minnesota's Steve Parente have been talking about this plan for a while now. We asked him to help explain the anticipated proposal. Parente Directs the Medical Industry Leadership Institute at the Carlson School of Management.
November 15, 2006 — Governor Pawlenty says he wants to extend health insurance coverage to all Minnesota children. He made the announcement yesterday during a speech to a group of health care and policy experts in Minneapolis. Pawlenty's remarks come just one week after he narrowly won re-election and now faces a Legislature that is controlled by Democrats. Several groups were surprised by the announcement. While they applaud the move, they want to hear more specifics before signing on. Minnesota Public Radio's Tom Scheck reports.
November 13, 2006 — African Americans and Native Americans have the highest fetal and infant mortality rates in Minnesota and the United States. The Minnesota Department of Health has been working with those families and the numbers of fetal and infant deaths have begun to decline. But now the focus is turning to Minnesota's growing Latino population where, it appears fetal deaths are increasing. Unlike African Americans and Native Americans, Latina women face special obstacles, in part because of language and immigration status. Minnesota Public Radio's Ambar Espinoza reports.
September 22, 2006 — The three candidates for congress in Minnesota's 6th district are offering distinctly different views on health care, taxes and the war in Iraq. Republican Michele Bachmann, Democrat Patty Wetterling and John Binkowski of the Independence Party covered a wide range of issues last night during a debate held in Woodbury. Minnesota Public Radio's Tim Pugmire reports.