The Rundown

Bipartisan proposal to eliminate ‘step therapy’ for Stage IV cancer introduced

By: - December 10, 2019 7:49 am

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Catching our eye:

No more ‘fail first’? Ohio Public Radio’s Andy Chow is reporting that bipartisan Ohio lawmakers “are proposing a bill that would eliminate an insurance provision known as ‘step therapy’ for people diagnosed with Stage IV cancer.

“Step therapy is when an insurance company requires a patient to try a certain type of treatment before going with what a doctor has prescribed. The first treatment recommended by the insurance company tends to be a cheaper option compared to what could be a more expensive course of treatment from the doctor. Critics call this the ‘fail first’ system.”

Copy and paste? The Guardian’s Jessica Glenza has a story today tying state Rep. Timothy Ginter’s “Student Religious Liberties Act” to a “a rightwing Christian bill mill called Project Blitz.” The Guardian reported that Ginter’s bill is “nearly identical to one promoted by Project Blitz, a state legislative project guided by three Christian right organizations, including the Congressional Prayer Caucus (CPC), WallBuilders and the ProFamily Legislators Conference.”

Through a legislative aide, Ginter reportedly denied any connection. Glenza reports that Ginter’s office said in an email “he had ‘no knowledge of ‘Project Blitz’ and has not been working with WallBuilders or the Congressional Prayer Caucus.”

Glenza reports, “a screenshot shows Ginter was listed as the co-chair of the Ohio Prayer Caucus, the state chapter of the Congressional Prayer Caucus, as recently as January 2019. Ginter’s former chief of staff, Chris Albanese, is currently listed as the state director of the state chapter of CPC, Ohio Prayer Caucus.”

The Cincinnati Enquirer’s Jackie Borchardt reported in April that while Ohio isn’t a hotbed for it, the use of model legislation in Ohio from business interests, think tanks and other organizations is not unusual.

Still waiting after 20 years. The Dayton Daily News’ Laura Bischoff has a story today about how Ohio has no set standards for health education. We covered this briefly in this space last week, but Bischoff’s story delves deeper:

“Nearly 20 years ago, conservative state lawmakers returned a federal grant to pay for sex education in the K-12 system and installed a legal requirement that any statewide health standards would have to be pre-approved by the Ohio Legislature.

“Two decades later, Ohio is the only state in the nation without health education standards to offer guidance on what children should learn about nutrition, drugs, mental health, sex and more and what skills they need to make healthy choices.”

The Afghanistan Papers. The Washington Post’s Craig Whitlock has a story on confidential documents that reveal U.S. officials failed to tell the truth about the war in Afghanistan.

“U.S. officials constantly said they were making progress. They were not, and they knew it,” Whitlock reports.

He reports that, “senior U.S. officials failed to tell the truth about the war in Afghanistan throughout the 18-year campaign, making rosy pronouncements they knew to be false and hiding unmistakable evidence the war had become unwinnable.”




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David DeWitt
David DeWitt

OCJ Editor-in-Chief and Columnist David DeWitt has been covering government, politics, and policy in Ohio since 2007, including education, health care, crime and courts, poverty, state and local government, business, labor, energy, environment, and social issues. He has worked for the National Journal, The New York Observer, The Athens NEWS, and He holds a bachelor’s degree from Ohio University’s E.W. Scripps School of Journalism and is a board member of the E.W. Scripps Society of Alumni and Friends. He can be found on Twitter @DC_DeWitt