The World Health Organization warns of long-term health impacts from the Ukraine crisis; states sign legislation aimed at curbing abortion access; over 14 million Americans signed up for health insurance through the Affordable Care Act.
As the war in Ukraine reaches its 1-month mark, the World Health Organization (WHO) outlined the dire situations the nation’s health care system faces in a new report. Although the largest military conflict in Europe since World War II has already resulted in thousands of deaths, experts warn the long-term toll will increase due to destruction of the country’s medical infrastructure and disruption of medical supply chains. Of the 1 in 4 displaced Ukrainians, 1 in 3 have a chronic condition, according to the WHO, while half of the nation’s pharmacies are thought to be closed. The country also has some of the highest rates of chronic infectious disease in Europe, including HIV and tuberculosis.
Idaho Governor Brad Little (R) signed legislation modelled after a controversial Texas law banning abortion after around 6 weeks, despite expressing some hesitation about the measure, The New York Times reports. Notably, the Idaho law will allow relatives rapists to sue abortion providers if they find out the procedure took place, a measure the Idaho governor said would retraumatize victims of sexual assault. In a similar move, South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem (R) also signed a bill that would make the state one of the most difficult in the country to receive abortion pills. However, the law’s enactment hinges on outcomes of a federal court battle, The Associated Press reports.
Over 14.5 million Americans signed up for Affordable Care Act (ACA) health insurance for 2022, marking a 21% increase over 2021, Reuters reports. Enrollment figures are also the highest since the ACA’s enactment 12 years ago. More than 10 million individuals enrolled from the 33 states that use the online marketplace and 4.3 million enrolled from states selling insurance to residents, while more that 18.7 million adult Americans are currently insured under Medicaid expansion. According to President Biden, enrollment rose by 26% for Hispanic Americans and 35% for Black Americans.