KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations.

As Work Changes, Docs And Nurses Changing Too

The New York Times: As Physicians' Jobs Change, So Do Their Politics
There are no national surveys that track doctors' political leanings, but as more doctors move from business owner to shift worker, their historic alliance with the Republican Party is weakening ... Doctors were once overwhelmingly male and usually owned their own practices. They generally favored lower taxes and regularly fought lawyers to restrict patient lawsuits. Ronald Reagan came to national political prominence in part by railing against "socialized medicine" on doctors' behalf. But doctors are changing (Harris, 5/30).

The Wall Street Journal: Paperwork Fees Add Up
Need a doctor to fill out a health form for your child's summer camp, school or day care? It may cost you extra. As many primary-care doctors struggle to cover the growing costs of running their practices, some are charging patients extra for completing paperwork outside of a regular office visit (Gerencher, 5/29).

The New York Times: Tuning In To Patients' Cries For Help
Whether it's a request for ice water, help getting to the bathroom or a plea for pain relief, an unanswered call light leaves hospital patients feeling helpless and frustrated. And for nurses, often the first responders to these calls, the situation is frustrating too: Short staffing and a heavy workload often make it impossible to respond as quickly as they would like. Now some hospitals around the country are starting programs to deal with the problem (Parker-Pope, 5/30).


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