Author Archives: Kathleen

About Kathleen

Kathleen O’Connor: 30+ year health care consumer advocate, non-profit executive and author. For more information about Kathleen, please see "About" on the main content bar above.

Our Children and Guns: Their Mental Health at Stake

When we talk about gun violence and mental health, let’s talk about the mental health of all our children. My words won’t matter, but these facts do:  Between 1963 and 2015 three times more children died from gun violence than … Continue reading

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New Health and Human Services Secretary, Drug Prices and Direct to Consumer Drug Advertising Dollars

Alex Azar, the new Health and Human Services (HHS)Secretary, headed Eli Lilly Company’s Lilly USA division.  Lilly USA’s best selling drugs are insulin and other diabetes products.  This division accounted for 40 % of Lilly’s revenue. Azar also served as … Continue reading

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Balancing the Budget with a Fog of Words

Words hide personal costs: ‘CHIP, Medicaid, Medicare, 100% of poverty ($20,400 for a family of three), covered benefits and ‘CSRs.’ Those programs are targeted to be reduced to balance the federal budget. At the same time current taxes on corporations … Continue reading

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Abandoning Our Children: Hiding Facts in Language?

My last blog lamented cuts to the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). The program is based on family income or “percent of poverty” allowed income. l  In 2017, poverty income for a family of three could not be more than … Continue reading

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“A Kiss to the Donor Class”

The current Republican tax reform proposal: “…is not aimed at growth. It is not aimed at the middle class. It is at every turn carefully engineered to deliver a kiss to the donor class.”  (former chief of staff at the … Continue reading

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Old? Poor? Disabled? Poor Children? Mental Health or Addiction? Our National Shame

Over the last 3 years in Seattle, Washington over 12, 000 people received $10 million dollars in free medical and dental services. The services were provided by volunteer doctors, dentists and social workers, among others. There was a modest admission … Continue reading

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Alzheimer’s Disease Innovation in Japan

I don’t usually do this, but I find this article and innovation fascinating. My mother and Great Aunt had Alzheimer’s Disease so it is always on my radar.  Japan is considered one of the leaders in Alzheimer’s care.  I hope … Continue reading

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A Tale of A Stroke: Two People’s Love, Courage and Community– from Millionaire to Medicaid

Nearly 15  years ago I met and have gotten to know another health care journalist–Mary Koch. We have kept in contact over these many years and I had the honor of meeting her and her husband, who has since died … Continue reading

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Rates, Regulations and Body Parts

Years ago I wrote an article about our Rates, Regulations and Body Parts approach to health care.  This approach has caused thousands of  legislative bills and laws for specific coverage and rates. A few examples include:  Mental health Children’s health … Continue reading

Posted in Affordable Care Act, Economics, Health Care Reform, Medicaid, medical bankruptcy, policy and politics, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Interesting Stories on ER Costs and More

I am in the throes of moving, but I found this article of interest, especially since it originates with a hospital north of Spokane, Washington. Not quite in my backyard, but close enough to be of interest.  I don’t have … Continue reading

Posted in Affordable Care Act, emergency rooms, health insurance, hospitals, medical bankruptcy, patient care | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment