COVID pandemic's end may bring turbulence for US health care

Posted at 10:51 AM, Mar 31, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-31 10:51:21-04

WASHINGTON (AP) — When the end of the COVID-19 pandemic comes, it could create major disruptions for U.S. health care.

Experts say the cumbersome health care system has been made more generous, flexible and up-to-date technologically through a raft of emergency measures.

Winding down those temporary policies could start as early as the summer, if the Biden administration ends a federal public health emergency in effect more than two years.

That would force an estimated 15 million Medicaid recipients to find new sources of coverage, and require congressional action to preserve broad telehealth access for Medicare enrollees.

It also would scramble COVID-19 rules and payment policies for hospitals, doctors, insurers and patients.