May 18, 2011 in City

Panel tackles health laws

By The Spokesman-Review
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To share thoughts or ask questions of Thursday KSPS panel participants, email healthmatters@

Your comments may be used during the program.

Washington state is enacting several new laws designed to comply and prepare for federal health care reform. Just as state officials are preparing for reforms, so too are hospitals, insurance companies, businesses, physician clinics and agencies and organizations that represent the poor.

The changes are coming amid the backdrop of deep budget cuts states are making in the wake of the recession and enduring economic malaise.

At 7 p.m. Thursday evening KSPS public television will air another Health Matters segment titled “Healing Healthcare: Prescriptions for Reform.”

Viewers are invited to email questions to the panel.

The show also will be streamed live on

The panel will include regional and state experts sharing their views on the current status of reform efforts; what may be in store for the residents of Spokane and Washington state; and what providers and insurers are doing to prepare.

Among the new laws passed in Washington, for example, is one establishing a health benefits exchange, which is expected to help small businesses to compare health insurance plans to offer employees as required by federal laws that take effect in less than three years.

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