Cover image of POLITICO's Pulse Check
(370)
News & Politics

POLITICO's Pulse Check

Updated 9 days ago

News & Politics
Read more

Weekly conversations with some of the most interesting and influential people in health care, hosted by POLITICO Pulse author Dan Diamond.

Read more

Weekly conversations with some of the most interesting and influential people in health care, hosted by POLITICO Pulse author Dan Diamond.

iTunes Ratings

370 Ratings
Average Ratings
339
16
6
4
5

Great!

By Boulder Chuck - Mar 21 2019
Read more
Just listened the the Scott Gottlieb interview, extremely articulate intelligent dedicated person. He will be missed. I love the in-depth coverage of issues. The interviews are the best. Conversations that last longer then just sound bites. Don asks pointed questions and his guests have time to fully respond.

Perfectly Wonky

By danielle at YSPH - Mar 08 2019
Read more
I have learned so much from this podcast. As a health policy student, pulse check has been my most useful tool in keeping up with health policy news. Its also taught me new things and gave me more insider knowledge than i could have gotten from a class! Love dan diamond and love pulse check!

iTunes Ratings

370 Ratings
Average Ratings
339
16
6
4
5

Great!

By Boulder Chuck - Mar 21 2019
Read more
Just listened the the Scott Gottlieb interview, extremely articulate intelligent dedicated person. He will be missed. I love the in-depth coverage of issues. The interviews are the best. Conversations that last longer then just sound bites. Don asks pointed questions and his guests have time to fully respond.

Perfectly Wonky

By danielle at YSPH - Mar 08 2019
Read more
I have learned so much from this podcast. As a health policy student, pulse check has been my most useful tool in keeping up with health policy news. Its also taught me new things and gave me more insider knowledge than i could have gotten from a class! Love dan diamond and love pulse check!
Cover image of POLITICO's Pulse Check

POLITICO's Pulse Check

Updated 9 days ago

Read more

Weekly conversations with some of the most interesting and influential people in health care, hosted by POLITICO Pulse author Dan Diamond.

Rank #1: Gun violence is more than a "mental health crisis"

Podcast cover
Read more

A pair of mass shootings have renewed the spotlight on the nation's high rate of gun deaths. POLITICO's Dan Diamond reviews why health care groups say that gun violence deaths represent a "public health crisis" — and how GOP congressmen and the current Surgeon General avoid using that term.

Then Dan talks with Amy Barnhorst, a UC Davis psychiatrist who specializes in gun violence research, about her work and legislation intended to reduce deaths (starts at the 3:15 mark), what she makes of recent comments by President Donald Trump and Democratic frontrunner Joe Biden about the role of mental illness and video games (15:45), and how physicians were mobilized by the NRA's "stay in their lane" tweet and what she would advise politicians to do (21:30).

MENTIONED ON THE SHOW

Dr. Barnhorst's February 2018 New York Times op-ed on why the mental health system shouldn't be responsible for stopping mass shooters.

A Sactown Magazine article looks closer at UC Davis' work on gun violence research.

California's implemented a gun violence restraining order law, devised in part by Dr. Barnhorst.

The president linked gun violence with mental health in a speech on Monday. Biden also decried violent video games as a possible factor.

Aug 08 2019
27 mins
Play

Rank #2: Kate Baicker on busting Obamacare myths

Podcast cover
Read more

The politics of health care are messy. Obamacare is haunted by myths. And that's why Harvard's Kate Baicker — a former White House economist and one of the nation's most acclaimed researchers — is so focused on using evidence, not anecdotes, to shape America's health policies. Baicker talks about building a career in research (starts at the 1:55 minute mark), her pioneering work with the Oregon Health Insurance Experiment (8:45), what she thinks of Obamacare’s cost controls and President Obama’s pitch for a public option (24:30), whether the ACA did enough to bend the cost curve (34:00), and what beltway pundits get wrong about health policy (41:30). Plus: Don't miss the lightning round quiz at 46:10. We’d appreciate your help: Please share PULSE CHECK and rate us on your favorite podcast app! Have questions, suggestions or feedback? Email ddiamond@politico.com.

Jul 14 2016
55 mins
Play

Rank #3: Andy Slavitt on how CMS will win doctors' hearts and minds

Podcast cover
Read more

Where's health care headed? No one knows better than Andy Slavitt, who runs Medicare and Medicaid — the nearly $1 trillion gorilla that shapes the industry — and who runs point on implementing Obamacare. Andy sat down with POLITICO's Dan Diamond to explain what it's like to lead one of the government's biggest agencies (starts at the 2:00 mark), how he got into health care and his efforts to demystify CMS (5:45), what it was like to be a contractor on the failed Obamacare exchange launch (18:00), how a Republican president could pick his successor (26:45), his thoughts on payment reform pilots (31:00), UnitedHealthcare pulling out of the ACA exchanges (39:00), why rising drug prices could be the top issue for Andy's successor (43:00), and how CMS lost the hearts and minds of doctors — and how the new physician payment rule, called MACRA, is going to get them back. (46:45) Plus: Don't miss the lightning round quiz at 54:45. Have questions, suggestions or feedback? Email ddiamond@politico.com.

Apr 27 2016
59 mins
Play

Rank #4: Why Obama's Datapalooza is still thriving under Trump

Podcast cover
Read more

The Trump administration has discarded or reworked a number of Obama-era programs. But this week's Health Datapalooza — an annual conference launched by Obama officials and hosted by Academy Health — has received the current administration's full support, a reminder that the desire to improve data can trump partisan politics.

On the podcast, Academy Health CEO Lisa Simpson joined POLITICO’s Dan Diamond to discuss the Datapalooza conference (starts at the 1:25 mark), why the Trump administration continues to supports the event and how the White House has shaped the current climate for researchers (3:20), why Academy Health focuses on "health services research" and how Lisa would like academic research to change (8:15) and the state of data, particularly as Silicon Valley firms eye health care (13:30).

After the break, POLITICO’s Mohana Ravindranath discusses her reporting on the Trump administration's data-access initiatives. (Starts at the 18:45 mark.)

Dan also remembers POLITICO’s Brett Norman, who died last week at age 43. (Starts at the 29:35 mark.)

Apr 25 2018
32 mins
Play

Rank #5: The fall of Theranos, with 'Bad Blood' author John Carreyrou

Podcast cover
Read more

In 2015, the Wall Street Journal's John Carreyrou revealed that the blood tests developed by Theranos — the $9 billion company led by Elizabeth Holmes — didn't work. Now John's out with "Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup," a book that offers new details about Holmes, her fraud and her efforts to kill his investigation.

John joined POLITICO's Dan Diamond to discuss how he got the story and walk through the Theranos timeline (starts at the 1:35 mark), how Holmes was able to attract staff, investors and media attention (12:00), why government regulators didn't spot the fraud (21:30), why staff were scared to blow the whistle (28:15), what Carreyrou thinks of reporters who missed the story and more on his journalistic process (33:30).

At the end, there's a lighting round of listener-submitted questions at 43:30.

We'd appreciate your help: Please share PULSE CHECK and rate us on your favorite podcast app!

Have questions, suggestions or feedback? Email ddiamond@politico.com.

MENTIONED ON THE SHOW

John's initial story on Theranos in 2015: https://www.wsj.com/articles/theranos-has-struggled-with-blood-tests-1444881901

Fortune Magazine's 2014 cover story on Holmes, one of many laudatory articles: http://fortune.com/2014/06/12/theranos-blood-holmes/

John's new book, "Bad Blood." https://www.amazon.com/dp/B078VW3VM7/ref=dp-kindle-redirect?_encoding=UTF8&btkr=1

Federal prosecutors filed criminal charges against Holmes and her lieutenant Sunny Balwani this month:
https://www.wsj.com/articles/u-s-files-criminal-charges-against-theranoss-elizabeth-holmes-ramesh-balwani-1529096005

Jun 20 2018
51 mins
Play

Rank #6: Jon Favreau and Rick Wilson on bad bills and worse messaging

Podcast cover
Read more

The Affordable Care Act has polled poorly for years — but Republicans’ health bill is polling even worse. What does it mean for the GOP to have such an unpopular bill, and how can progressives take advantage of it? On this PULSE CHECK, you’ll hear from two experts in political messaging and strategy. First, Jon Favreau, who was the chief speechwriter for President Obama and is a cofounder of Crooked Media, a new liberal political media network, sits down with POLITICO’s Dan Diamond to talk about setting Affordable Care Act strategy, Republicans’ struggles to craft a health bill of their own, and how his views on media have changed since starting a media company. (Starts at the 1:50 mark.) Then after the break, Rick Wilson, a Republican strategist who helped attack the Affordable Care Act, explains why Obamacare’s pre-existing conditions protections are the “nuclear bomb” against critics of the law, why he's no fan of Republicans' current health care strategy, and how the GOP is risking the party’s political future by pushing a bad bill. (Starts at the 38:50 mark.) We’d appreciate your help: Please share PULSE CHECK and rate us on your favorite podcast app! Have questions, suggestions or feedback? Email ddiamond@politico.com.

May 11 2017
51 mins
Play

Rank #7: Dissecting a debate moment: Sanders, Warren and... Delaney?

Podcast cover
Read more

"You're wrong" about Medicare-for-all, Sen. Bernie Sanders told former Rep. John Delaney as this week's Democratic debates kicked off — an exchange that set the tone for the first night.

Pulse Check host Dan Diamond joined Scott Bland, host of POLITICO's Nerdcast, to discuss the exchange (and Sen. Elizabeth Warren's comments too) for a bonus crossover episode.

MENTIONED ON THE SHOW

Delaney's "BetterCare" plan, which goes further than some other Democrats' proposals toward ensuring universal coverage.

Warren's rebuke that Democrats need to stop using Republican talking points on health care.

POLITICO's Nerdcast, Pulse Check's sister podcast, looks closer at the political landscape every week.

Jul 31 2019
10 mins
Play

Rank #8: Farzad Mostashari on how government really works

Podcast cover
Read more

Farzad Mostashari has been on the frontlines of health care's biggest stories — from New York City's war on smoking to the Obama administration's $30 billion push for electronic health records. Now he's the CEO of Aledade, a fast-growing company that blends digital and population health and riding the wave of Obamacare startups. Farzad sat down with POLITICO's Dan Diamond to discuss his beginnings in public health (starts at the 2:20 mark), his move to become the nation's leader on health IT (8:55), his thoughts on the Meaningful Use program (15:00), what it's like to be a government regulator (20:30), why he started Aledade (28:00), whether MACRA is a boon for the industry (34:00), if independent doctors are endangered and how new Medicare pilots will help (41:00). Plus: Don't miss the lightning round quiz at 48:00.

May 05 2016
52 mins
Play

Rank #9: Brett Kavanaugh, ACA court hearings take center stage

Podcast cover
Read more

In a bonus episode, POLITICO's Adam Cancryn and Paul Demko join Dan Diamond to preview this week's high-stakes hearings.

Tuesday: The Senate Judiciary Committee begins grilling Judge Brett Kavanaugh, President Donald Trump's latest nominee to the Supreme Court.

Wednesday: Texas v. Azar gets underway, with the Affordable Care Act's protections at stake.

Sep 03 2018
19 mins
Play

Rank #10: Defending vaccines, with Paul Offit

Podcast cover
Read more

"I've been physically harassed. I've been sued as a way of getting me to shut up. I've had three death threats the FBI deemed credible... But doing the right thing isn't an easy thing."

Paul Offit, a pediatrician at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, has stepped forward as one of the nation's leading defenders of vaccines — a role that's won him national praise and interviews with Stephen Colbert, but also led him to battle with a vocal community of anti-vaxxers.

Paul joined POLITICO's Dan Diamond to discuss vaccines and why the current political climate is so troubling — and why he wants to send some reporters to "journalism jail" for enabling lies about science.

We'd appreciate your help: Please share PULSE CHECK and rate us on your favorite podcast app!

Have questions, suggestions or feedback? Email ddiamond@politico.com.

REFERENCED ON THE PODCAST

Paul’s new book, "Bad Advice: Or Why Celebrities, Politicians, and Activists Aren't Your Best Source of Health Information"

Paul’s 2015 book, “Bad Faith: When Religious Belief Undermines Modern Medicine.”

Donald Trump made public statements linking autism and vaccines.

Aug 15 2018
39 mins
Play

Rank #11: Why the Part B fight is roiling Washington

Podcast cover
Read more

Medicare's planned Part B pilot is either a necessary fix to a broken drug payment system — or the first step to President Donald Trump dismantling the Affordable Care Act. It all depends whom you ask. And this week, we asked Peter Bach and Ted Okon — a high-profile proponent and opponent of Medicare's pilot, respectively — to make their case. Bach joined Dan Diamond to discuss why drug spending has become such a huge problem (starts at the 2:00 mark), why Medicare's trying to change how it pays doctors for drugs (6:00), and how he defends the pilot against charges that it's an over-reach (14:15). Okon joined Dan to explain his criticism of Medicare's pilot (25:20), why he thinks the Part B demo is a dangerous over-reach (34:50), and why oncologists are especially vulnerable to payment changes (43:00). Plus: POLITICO's Sarah Karlin-Smith and Brett Norman join Dan to referee the Part B fight and predict what happens next. (49:17) We’d appreciate your help: Please share PULSE CHECK and rate us on your favorite podcast app! Have questions, suggestions or feedback? Email ddiamond@politico.com.

Jun 16 2016
58 mins
Play

Rank #12: She's a Medicaid expert. He's the ex-CEO of Apple. Here's how they see the GOP bill.

Podcast cover
Read more

President Donald Trump reportedly bashed the House health bill as “mean, mean, mean." But will the Senate's version be any better? And what do experts want senators to know as they finalize their bill? On this episode of PULSE CHECK, Dan Diamond talks with two people with very different perspectives — and significant concerns — as changes to the health system loom in Congress. First, Diane Rowland of the Kaiser Family Foundation sits down (starts at the 2:25 mark) to talk about Kaiser’s latest polling on Republicans’ health care efforts and how possible Medicaid cuts could hurt Trump's voters. Then after the break, John Sculley, the former CEO of Apple and Pepsi and now a health care investor and executive, talks about his own meetings with Republicans on the Hill this week and his thoughts on how dramatic changes could complicate the business of health care. (Starts at 30:46.) We’d appreciate your help: Please share PULSE CHECK and rate us on your favorite podcast app! Have questions, suggestions or feedback? Email ddiamond@politico.com or tweet him @ddiamond.

Jun 15 2017
51 mins
Play

Rank #13: Roundup: Taxes and Mayo Clinic, ACA myths and Uwe

Podcast cover
Read more

It’s been a busy week in health care, and PULSE CHECK is here to help make sense of it all.

First, POLITICO’s Paul Demko and Sarah Karlin-Smith join Dan Diamond to discuss Republicans’ tax reform plans, Alex Azar’s nomination as HHS secretary, the state of ACA enrollment and Dan’s reporting on the Mayo Clinic. (Starts at the 2:00 mark.)

Then, Dartmouth professor Brendan Nyhan sits down with Dan to discuss his research into myths and lies about the ACA, vaccines and other health care issues, and how to change a person’s mind. (Starts at the 27:15 mark.)

Finally, Dan reflects on Uwe Reinhardt, the giant of health policy who passed away this week. (Starts at the 45:35 mark.)

We’d appreciate your help: Please share PULSE CHECK and rate us on your favorite podcast app!

Have questions, suggestions or feedback? Email ddiamond@politico.com.

Stories and work referenced on the podcast:

Sarah and Adam Cancryn's story on Alex Azar, the nominee to lead HHS: https://www.politico.com/story/2017/11/13/alex-azar-hhs-secretary-trump-244837

Paul's story on the early ACA enrollment numbers: https://www.politico.com/story/2017/11/15/obamacare-enrollment-surges-trump-244930

Dan's story on Mayo Clinic's growth and rural patients' anger: www.politico.com/story/2017/11/16/mayo-clinic-rural-health-care-244955

Brendan Nyhan's work on death panel myths: http://www.brendan-nyhan.com/blog/2013/01/new-study-on-difficulty-of-correcting-death-panel-myth.html

The New York Times' obituary of Uwe Reinhardt: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/15/obituaries/uwe-reinhardt-a-listened-to-voice-on-health-care-policy-dies-at-80.html?_r=0

Nov 17 2017
51 mins
Play

Rank #14: Andy Slavitt on what's next for health care - and him

Podcast cover
Read more

Andy Slavitt has been busy: Since leaving office in January, the man who ran Medicare, Medicaid and the ACA has mounted a whirlwind defense of Obamacare, holding town halls coast to coast and being ever-present on social media. And in a repeat podcast appearance, Slavitt rejoins POLITICO's Dan Diamond to explain his strategy — and what this year has been like as his profile exploded. Andy discusses how he morphed from Obama administration official to the ACA's most visible advocate (starts at the 3:00 mark), the bipartisan solutions he thinks are necessary in health care (6:30), what he thinks HHS will do and why he thinks his criticism of the GOP is fair (12:00), whether he'd ever run for office (25:00), if he still needs the media as someone with 100,000-plus Twitter followers (34:30), and what he's learned about communications strategy since leaving office (42:20). Note: This conversation was recorded in late July, a few days before the Senate GOP health bill failed on the floor. We’d appreciate your help: Please share PULSE CHECK and rate us on your favorite podcast app! Have questions, suggestions or feedback? Email ddiamond@politico.com or tweet him @ddiamond.

Aug 09 2017
47 mins
Play

Rank #15: ‘Only 23 million more uninsured’

Podcast cover
Read more

Republicans’ health care legislation continues to lurch forward, with the Congressional Budget Office this week again predicting the bill will lead to 20-million-plus more uninsured in a decade. On this episode of PULSE CHECK, we discuss how the CBO score is playing in Washington and what’s ahead for the unpopular bill. First, POLITICO’s Jen Haberkorn and Paul Demko discuss their reporting from Capitol Hill, address the latest reports about the health of Obamacare and share how the Senate is approaching its efforts. (Starts at 1:45.) Then, Matt Fiedler of the Brookings Institution — and the former chief economist of the Obama administration’s Council of Economic Advisers — shares his analysis of the GOP bill and why he thinks the most recent changes made it worse. (Starts at 27:10.) We’d appreciate your help: Please share PULSE CHECK and rate us on your favorite podcast app! Have questions, suggestions or feedback? Email ddiamond@politico.com.

May 26 2017
42 mins
Play

Rank #16: The lawyers trying to prove Trump sabotaged the ACA

Podcast cover
Read more

It’s no secret that President Donald Trump and his administration oppose the Affordable Care Act. But what's gone under the radar: a lawsuit that’s trying to use Trump’s own words to prove that his "sabotage" violates his constitutional responsibilities.

On the podcast, Zach Klein — the attorney for Columbus, Ohio — explains to POLITICO's Dan Diamond why he decided to join the multi-city lawsuit against the Trump administration and how efforts to weaken the ACA could harm his constituents.

After the break, Yale law professor Abbe Gluck explains the legal theory behind the case and whether she thinks it has a shot at success.

We'd appreciate your help: Please share PULSE CHECK and rate us on your favorite podcast app!

Have questions, suggestions or feedback? Email ddiamond@politico.com.

MENTIONED ON THE SHOW

Columbus joined Baltimore, Chicago and other cities in suing the Trump administration.

Abbe Gluck in October 2017 laid out the argument that Trump's moves to undermine the Affordable Care Act were illegal.

Aug 29 2018
28 mins
Play

Rank #17: What Brett Kavanaugh means for health care

Podcast cover
Read more

It's official: Judge Brett Kavanaugh is President Donald Trump's choice to replace retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy on the Supreme Court.

And his probable confirmation, and the Court's resulting shift to the right, raises serious questions for health care. What happens to the Affordable Care Act? Is Roe v. Wade doomed? And how does this change lawmakers' strategy ahead of the midterms?

In a bonus conversation, POLITICO's Jennifer Haberkorn and Adam Cancryn joined Dan Diamond to discuss Kavanaugh's background and why he was picked, how the selection is playing across key advocacy groups that could sway the nomination and what's next for the Court and Congress.

REFERENCED ON THE PODCAST

Kavanaugh's track record as an appeals court judge: https://www.politico.com/story/2018/07/09/brett-kavanaugh-track-record-675294

Adam's story on the reaction to Kavanaugh's selection: https://www.politico.com/story/2018/07/09/brett-kavanaugh-conservative-policies-675460

POLITICO's reporting on how Kavanaugh quickly emerged as a front-runner for the seat: https://www.politico.com/story/2018/07/09/brett-kavanaugh-trump-private-meeting-706137

POLITICO's Josh Gerstein dug into Kavanaugh's decision on abortion access for a teen immigrant, a ruling that's split conservatives. https://www.politico.com/story/2018/07/06/trump-supreme-court-pick-kavanaugh-immigrant-abortion-teen-700856

Jen's April 2018 reporting on how opponents of Roe v. Wade were preparing for this moment:
https://www.politico.com/story/2018/04/15/abortion-trump-supreme-court-roe-wade-473601

Jen's story on abortion cases that could come before the Supreme Court: https://www.politico.com/story/2018/07/03/trump-supreme-court-pick-abortion-667924

Jul 10 2018
36 mins
Play

Rank #18: Cleveland Clinic CEO Toby Cosgrove on what he's telling his senator, and news roundup

Podcast cover
Read more

Republicans' health care push continues to grip the Capitol and keep the industry on high alert. On this episode of PULSE CHECK, we review how that effort is unfolding in D.C. but also in Ohio, in a sit-down interview with one of America's most powerful health care leaders. First, POLITICO's Jen Haberkorn joins Dan Diamond to discuss her reporting on the latest twists and turns in the GOP health care push (starts at the 1:45 mark). Then Dr. Toby Cosgrove, the heart surgeon who runs the Cleveland Clinic, talks about why he turned down both the Obama and Trump administration's overtures about being VA Secretary, what he's telling Ohio Sen. Rob Portman about Republicans' health bill and his view on the health care industry's challenges (starts at the 12:45 mark). We’d appreciate your help: Please share PULSE CHECK and rate us on your favorite podcast app! Have questions, suggestions or feedback? Email ddiamond@politico.com or tweet him @ddiamond.

Jun 30 2017
41 mins
Play

Rank #19: Ben Wikler: ‘The Resistance’ isn’t futile

Podcast cover
Read more

The Senate GOP is pushing forward with plans to roll back all or part of the Affordable Care Act, threatening insurance coverage for millions of Americans. A devastating moment for progressives? Not at all, says Ben Wikler, the Washington director for MoveOn.org, who argues that the drawn-out fight to repeal the ACA has turned into a major win. Wikler joined PULSE CHECK to talk about activism in the Trump era, how “the Resistance” in 2017 compares to the Tea Party in 2009 and how he’s thinking about the health care fight and what lies ahead. (Starts at the 9:25 mark.) But first: POLITICO deputy health care editor Jason Millman joined Dan Diamond to talk about the latest developments in the Senate and the “skinny repeal” plan now under consideration. (Starts at the 2:00 mark.) We’d appreciate your help: Please share PULSE CHECK and rate us on your favorite podcast app! Have questions, suggestions or feedback? Email ddiamond@politico.com or tweet him @ddiamond. NOTE: Dan will be at Politicon.com in California this weekend for a live-taping of POLITICO’s Nerdcast podcast and to moderate a panel on health care. Stories referenced on the podcast: The Senate’s push to repeal the ACA: http://www.politico.com/story/2017/07/26/obamacare-repeal-republicans-minimum-240982 John McCain’s attack on the GOP: http://www.politico.com/story/2017/07/25/john-mccain-obamacare-repeal-240946 The so-called "skinny repeal": http://www.politico.com/story/2017/07/25/mitch-mcconnell-skinny-obamacare-repeal-240943

Jul 26 2017
34 mins
Play

Rank #20: How the Senate's 'illusion of momentum' might give them the real thing

Podcast cover
Read more

The Senate is driving forward on its health care bill, with a vote looming as soon as late June — even though it's still not clear what's in the bill or if they'll have the votes. How should you think about the Senate's push? Rodney Whitlock — who was health care adviser to Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley — joins POLITICO's Dan Diamond to discuss the dynamics of the Senate and what's at stake in the health care fight. Meanwhile: there’s a lot more to health care than the ACA and AHCA. And after the break, Niall Brennan — the former chief data officer for Medicare and Medicaid and the new head of the Health Care Cost Institute — discusses the biggest spending problems in health care and whether we can trust the data that the Trump administration is publishing. We’d appreciate your help: Please share PULSE CHECK and rate us on your favorite podcast app! Have questions, suggestions or feedback? Email ddiamond@politico.com or tweet him @ddiamond.

Jun 08 2017
37 mins
Play

Similar Podcasts