What We're Reading: Has the ACA's Struggles Renewed Interest in a Public Option?

What we're reading, November 4, 2016: Public option gains momentum among Democrats; a new Veterans Affairs clinic is dedicated to women's health; and Sutter Health in California attempts to prevent lawsuits.

Both Democrats and Republicans agree that the Affordable Care Act is flawed; however, the 2 parties disagree how to move forward. According to The Wall Street Journal, Democratic legislators are increasingly looking at creating a government option in health insurance. This option differs from a single-payer system, where the government’s insurance covers everyone. Instead, a public option can be nationwide, state-based, or only limited to areas where there are few insurance options. Hillary Clinton is a longtime supporter of the public option, while Donald Trump has come out against it.

A new Veterans Affairs clinic in Pennsylvania has been dedicated to provide specialized care for female veterans. Currently, 10% of veterans are women and that number is growing; the new clinic provides more privacy and security for these patients, reported Times Leader. In addition to the regular benefits female veterans receive, the women’s center will also provide specialty care that includes reproductive healthcare, such as maternity care and infertility evaluation and some treatment.

In California, some companies are being asked to sign a contract to waive their rights to sue hospitals in Sutter Health’s system. NPR reported that for companies that do not sign the contract, employees will not have discounted in-network prices for using Sutter’s network. Sutter Health already charges higher prices than other hospitals in the state, according to research.