Julie Rovner

Julie Rovner is a health policy correspondent for NPR specializing in the politics of health care.

Reporting on all aspects of health policy and politics, Rovner covers the White House, Capitol Hill, the Department of Health and Human Services in addition to issues around the country. She served as NPR's lead correspondent covering the passage and implementation of the 2010 health overhaul bill, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

A noted expert on health policy issues, Rovner is the author of a critically-praised reference book Health Care Politics and Policy A-Z. Rovner is also co-author of the book Managed Care Strategies 1997, and has contributed to several other books, including two chapters in Intensive Care: How Congress Shapes Health Policy, edited by political scientists Norman Ornstein and Thomas Mann.

In 2005, Rovner was awarded the Everett McKinley Dirksen Award for distinguished reporting of Congress for her coverage of the passage of the Medicare prescription drug law and its aftermath.

Rovner has appeared on television on the NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, CNN, C-Span, MSNBC, and NOW with Bill Moyers. Her articles have appeared in dozens of national newspapers and magazines, including The Washington Post, USA Today, Modern Maturity, and The Saturday Evening Post.

Prior to NPR, Rovner covered health and human services for the Congressional Quarterly Weekly Report, specializing in health care financing, abortion, welfare, and disability issues. Later she covered health reform for the Medical News Network, an interactive daily television news service for physicians, and provided analysis and commentary on the health reform debates in Congress for NPR. She has been a regular contributor to the British medical journal The Lancet. Her columns on patients' rights for the magazine Business and Health won her a share of the 1999 Jesse H. Neal National Business Journalism Award.

An honors graduate, Rovner has a degree in political science from University of Michigan-Ann Arbor.

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1:09pm

Fri June 21, 2013
Shots - Health News

FDA OKs Prescription-Free Plan B For All Ages, Ending Battle

Originally published on Tue June 25, 2013 4:23 pm

Protesters picket in front of the Jacob K. Javits Federal Building in New York City in 2006 for the removal of an age limit on the morning-after pill.
Bloomberg Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Food and Drug Administration Thursday evening approved over-the-counter sale, with no age restrictions, of Plan B One-Step. That's the morning-after pill whose status has been the subject of a dozen years of political wrangling and legal dispute.

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3:04am

Fri June 21, 2013
Shots - Health News

With Health Exchanges Poised To Open, PR Push Draws Scrutiny

Originally published on Fri June 21, 2013 9:07 pm

In San Jose, Calif., on June 6, President Obama encouraged people to sign up for insurance in the nation's largest health insurance market.
Stephen Lam Getty Images

This weekend marks 100 days until people can begin signing up for new health insurance coverage under the federal health care law. It also marks another milestone: the launch of an enormous public relations effort to find people eligible for new coverage and urge them to sign up when the time comes.

But like everything else about the health law, even this seemingly innocuous effort has been touched by controversy.

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2:59am

Mon June 17, 2013
Shots - Health News

To Find Out How The Health Law Affects You, Ask The President

Originally published on Mon June 17, 2013 1:13 pm

President Obama encourages people to sign up for health insurance exchanges in San Jose, Calif., on June 6.
Stephen Lam Getty Images

Call it the Affordable Care Act, call it Obamacare, call it whatever you want — it's coming. And soon. In less than four months people without health insurance will be able to start signing up for coverage that begins Jan. 1.

A lot has been said about the law, most of it not that understandable. So starting now, and continuing occasionally through the summer and fall, we're going to try to fix that.

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1:38pm

Thu June 13, 2013
Shots - Health News

Judge Reluctantly Approves Government Plan For Morning-After Pill

Originally published on Thu June 13, 2013 4:11 pm

This brand may have a near-monopoly in emergency contraception.
AP

An obviously unhappy Judge Edward Korman has approved the Obama administration's proposal to make just one formulation of the morning-after birth control pill available over the counter without age restrictions.

But in a testily worded six-page memorandum, the federal district judge made it clear he is not particularly pleased with the outcome. He has been overseeing the case in one way or another for more than eight years.

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5:08pm

Tue June 11, 2013
Shots - Health News

Administration's Plan For Morning-After Pill Pleases No One

Originally published on Tue June 11, 2013 6:20 pm

Plan B One-Step might be the only emergency contraceptive available to all ages without a prescription.
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Reaction was swift to the Obama administration's announcement Monday night that it was dropping a long-running legal battle to keep age restrictions on one type of the morning-after birth control pill.

But like just about everything else in this decade-long controversy, the latest decision has pleased just about no one.

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5:58pm

Wed June 5, 2013
Shots - Health News

Court Says Some Morning-After Pills Must Be Available OTC Now

Originally published on Wed June 5, 2013 6:00 pm

A federal appeals court has dealt the Obama administration yet another blow in its quest to keep at least some age restrictions on the sale of emergency contraceptive pills.

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3:53pm

Tue June 4, 2013
Shots - Health News

Maternity Coverage Sought For Young Women On Parent's Plan

Originally published on Tue June 4, 2013 6:00 pm

Young women can get health insurance through a parent, but it doesn't always include maternity care.
iStockphoto.com

Young women covered by a parent's health insurance don't necessarily get maternity coverage. The National Women's Law Center thinks it may have found a way to get them benefits.

The group has filed sex discrimination complaints against five large publicly funded employers, using a little-noticed provision of the Affordable Care Act that bars discrimination in health benefits on the basis of gender.

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5:30pm

Thu May 30, 2013
Shots - Health News

Administration Touts Competition In Insurance Exchanges

The Obama administration is countering criticism that the new health insurance exchanges will be lacking in competition, though it's doing so a bit quietly.

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6:20pm

Thu May 23, 2013
Shots - Health News

Abortion Opponents Try to Spin Murder Case Into Legislation

Originally published on Thu May 23, 2013 8:23 pm

Rep. Trent Franks, R-Ariz., has introduced a federal bill to ban most abortions after 20 weeks' gestation — six weeks into the second trimester. This is the second straight Congress he's done so, but this time he's broadened his bill to encompass all 50 states, not just D.C.
Matt York AP

As predicted, abortion opponents on Capitol Hill are wasting no time in their efforts to turn publicity over the recent murder conviction of abortion provider Kermit Gosnell to their legislative advantage.

Their latest goal: a federal ban on most abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.

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3:00am

Wed May 22, 2013
Shots - Health News

Boomer Housemates Have More Fun

Originally published on Fri May 24, 2013 11:21 am

Group houses are becoming popular — again — among some single baby boomers, and not just for financial reasons. Marianne Kilkenny (second from right) shares her home in Asheville, N.C, with four other people.
Mike Belleme The New York Times

Today more than 1 in every 3 baby boomers — that huge glut of people born between 1948 and 1964 — is unmarried. And those unmarried boomers are disproportionately women.

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