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Health Care

Community clinics say the easing of restrictions on telehealth during the pandemic has made it possible for health workers to connect with hard-to-reach patients via a phone call — people who are poor, elderly or live in remote areas, and don't have access to a computer or cellphone with video capability. Silke Enkelmann/EyeEm/Getty Images hide caption

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Silke Enkelmann/EyeEm/Getty Images

Voice-only telehealth may go away with pandemic rules expiring

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HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra says doctors who are balking at the rules of the No Surprises Act aren't looking out for patients. "I don't think when someone is overcharging that it's going to hurt the overcharger to now have to [accept] a fair price," Becerra says. The Congressional Budget Office estimates the Biden team's rules would push insurance premiums down by 0.5% to 1%. Bryan R. Smith/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

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Bryan R. Smith/AFP via Getty Images

Safeway pharmacist Shahrzad Khoobyari administers a Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 booster shot into the arm of Norman Solomon in San Rafael, Calif., in October. Justin Sullivan/Getty Images hide caption

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Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Jason Dean received six stitches and a tetanus shot after he cut his knee in May. In August, his wife, DeeAnn, feared going to the same emergency room where he was treated, delaying her diagnosis of Rocky Mountain spotted fever. Blake Farmer/WPLN News hide caption

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Blake Farmer/WPLN News

Some doctors, medical associations and members of Congress are complaining that the rule released by the Biden administration this fall for implementing the law to stop surprise medical bills actually favors insurers and doesn't follow the spirit of the legislation. Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images hide caption

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Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

After two student suicides over one October weekend, UNC students created a makeshift memorial on the Chapel Hill campus. To reduce the risk of suicide contagion, any memorial sites or activities should be limited, experts say, and should not glorify, vilify or stigmatize the deceased student or their death. Ira Wilder/Daily Tar Heel hide caption

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Ira Wilder/Daily Tar Heel

Protesters take part in the Women's March and Rally for Abortion Justice in Austin, Texas, on Oct. 2. The demonstration targeted Senate Bill 8, a state law that bans nearly all abortions as early as six weeks in a pregnancy, making no exceptions for survivors of rape or incest. SERGIO FLORES/Sergio Flores/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

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SERGIO FLORES/Sergio Flores/AFP via Getty Images
Marla Aufmuth / TED

Priti Krishtel: How can we reform the outdated US patent system to lower drug prices?

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Medicare Advantage health plans have enrolled nearly 27 million members, or about 45% of people eligible for Medicare. A recent analysis finds Medicare overpaid the private health plans by more than $106 billion from 2010 through 2019 because of the way the plans charge for sicker patients. Innocenti/Image Source/Getty Images hide caption

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Innocenti/Image Source/Getty Images

Left to right: Filipino American health care workers Karen Cantor, Karen Shoker, and John Paul Atienza were among many who cared for COVID patients in the early days of the pandemic. Rosem Morton hide caption

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Rosem Morton

Bottles of medicine ride on a belt at the Express Scripts mail-in pharmacy warehouse in Florence, N.J., in 2018. Democratic lawmakers have reached a deal to lower prescription drug prices for seniors. Julio Cortez/AP hide caption

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Julio Cortez/AP

Pfizer-BioNTech's COVID-19 vaccine for young children is a lower-dose formulation of the companies' adult vaccine. It was found to be safe and nearly 91% effective at preventing COVID-19. Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty hide caption

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Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty

A Kenyan mother and her two children sit on their bed under a mosquito net used to prevent malaria. Wendy Stone/Corbis via Getty Images hide caption

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Wendy Stone/Corbis via Getty Images

International visitors who fly into the U.S. will have a new set of rules and requirements regarding COVID-19 vaccines, starting Nov. 8. Angus Mordant/Bloomberg via Getty Images hide caption

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Angus Mordant/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Subin Yang for NPR

6 tips to help you pick the right health insurance plan

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Mai Yang, a communicable disease specialist, searches for Angelica, a 27 year-old pregnant woman who tested positive for syphilis, in order to get her treated before she delivers her baby. Talia Herman for ProPublica hide caption

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Talia Herman for ProPublica

Syphilis is resurging in the U.S., a sign of public health's funding crisis

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A syringe is filled with a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine. While the vaccine has now been authorized for children between ages 5 and 11, it may take several weeks for shots to become widely available. Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

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Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images

Like many seniors, William Stork of Cedar Hill, Mo., lacks dental insurance and doesn't want to pay $1,000 for a tooth extraction he needs. Health advocates see President Biden's Build Back Better agenda as a once-in-a-generation opportunity to provide dental coverage to people like Stork who are on Medicare. An unlikely adversary: the American Dental Association. Joe Martinez for Kaiser Health News hide caption

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Joe Martinez for Kaiser Health News

Stacey Abrams speaks during a church service in Norfolk, Va., on Oct. 17. A political organization led by the Democrat is branching out into paying off medical debts. Fair Fight Action said it's donating $1.34 million from its political action committee to wipe out debt owed by 108,000 people in Georgia, Arizona, Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. Steve Helber/AP hide caption

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Steve Helber/AP