As the death toll in nursing homes rises and COVID-19 testing capacity slowly expands, states are each crafting new testing policies to prevent and contain outbreaks in long-term care facilities, where more than half of coronavirus deaths have occurred in many states. While the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued general […]
Author Archive for: chris-kukka
About Christine Kukka
Christine Kukka joined NASHP as its publications director and editor of its weekly e-newsletter in August 2017. She has many years of experience writing about health care access, cost, and equity, starting when she worked as a news reporter covering the AIDS epidemic in the 1980s. Since then, she has written about health care for numerous government and nonprofit health care websites, including the Hepatitis B Foundation, the Hepatitis C Support Project, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the US Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality Innovations Exchange. She has also researched and authored injection safety training materials for village doctors in China, a project funded by PATH (Program for Appropriate Technology in Health). Her focus at NASHP is to make sure the state health policy innovations that NASHP staff research and write about are accessible to a broad audience of state leaders, lawmakers, journalists, and other stakeholders.
Entries by Christine Kukka
In several states, nursing home staff and residents make up nearly half of residents who have died from COVID-19, including 55 percent of deaths caused by the coronavirus in Massachusetts. While hospitals’ personal protective equipment (PPE) shortages have been highlighted, less attention has been paid to the critical need for PPE and infection control expertise […]
Last week, Gov. Ned Lamont signed two executive orders that establish health care cost growth and quality benchmarks and require more transparency of Medicaid costs and quality. The benchmarks are similar to ones Massachusetts implemented, which has helped Bay State consumers avoid more than $5 billion in costs since 2013. “Gov. Lamont’s initiative directly addresses the high costs of health care […]
State policymakers on the frontlines of the opioid epidemic understand that treating justice-involved individuals with opioid use disorder (OUD) offers a critical opportunity to expand access to treatment. While there is strong evidence that medication-assisted treatment (MAT) promotes recovery, saves lives, and reduces re-incarceration, states must surmount significant policy and financial challenges to provide MAT […]