Morgan True

Morgan True

Morgan True is VTDigger's health care reporter. A Seattle native, he graduated from Boston University with a Bachelor of Science in Journalism before working for several publications in Massachusetts. He came to VTDigger in December 2013 from The Brockton Daily Enterprise, where he covered government, schools and hospitals in a city of about 100,000 people. Before joining The Enterprise, he worked for The Associated Press in Concord, N.H., where he served as a relief reporter in the Statehouse. He previously worked for The Quincy (Mass.) Patriot Ledger and as an intern at the Worcester (Mass.) Telegram & Gazette. Many eyes are on Vermont as it moves toward universal health care coverage in 2017 and he is excited to be on the front lines.

Email: [email protected]


    BCBS VT among insurers named in class action antitrust case

    Blue Cross and Blue Shield Insurance of Vermont in Berlin, Vt.

    “We believe the claims are without merit and we have joined with the other defendants to vigorously defend against them,” officials from BCBS Vermont said in a statement to VTDigger.

    Hundreds of MVP customers on the health exchange are billed past due

    Vermont Health Connect feature

    Trinka Kerr’s office has recently taken numerous calls from outraged consumers who have received collections notices from MVP Health Care, one of two carriers participating in the exchange. MVP covers less than 10 percent of the 32,000 plans sold on through the exchange’s individual market.

    Republicans request records of Gruber’s work for Vermont

    MIT economics professor Jonathan Gruber is a consultant on Vermont's examination of a publicly financed health care system. Courtesy photo

    GOP lawmakers are seeking public records related to health care economist Jonathan Gruber’s work for the Shumlin Administration. They cite a need for transparency, given Gruber’s past remarks about health care politics.

    Vermont health officials monitoring two who visited West Africa

    Tracy Dolan, acting Health Commissioner, joined Gov. Peter Shumlin on Tuesday at a news conference regarding a person who is under quarantine after returning from West Africa, where the deadly Ebola virus has claimed nearly 5,000 lives. Photo by Morgan True/VTDigger

    Two people who recently returned to Vermont from Ebola-stricken West Africa are about to complete a 21-day monitoring period, health officials said Thursday. They were not held in quarantine and do not have symptoms of the disease.

    Gruber agrees to take pay cut for single-payer work

    MIT economics professor Jonathan Gruber is a consultant on Vermont's examination of a publicly financed health care system. Courtesy photo

    The state will make no further payments to Jonathan Gruber, following the recent discovery of controversial remarks by the health care consultant. Gruber’s team will be paid to finish work on a single-payer health care system.

    Lessons learned from Vermont Health Connect lead to oversight changes for next major IT project 

    Dr. Harry Chen, interim Secretary of Human Services, and Lawrence Miller, chief of health care reform. VTDigger photo by Morgan True.

    In light of its troubles with IT contracts for Vermont Health Connect, the state is changing its oversight structure for the next massive project, an overhaul of Human Services information technology.

    It’s too late to fire MIT economist, Shumlin says

    Photo of William Hsiao and Jonathon Gruber.

    Gov. Peter Shumlin said despite a series of disparaging remarks made by state-hired economist Jonathan Gruber, his expertise is needed to complete projections of the impact of a publicly funded health care system.

    Minter to replace Searles at Agency of Transportation

    State Transportation Secretary Brian Searles speaks at a news conference Tuesday at the AOT garage in Berlin. Searles will retire at the end of this year and will be replaced by his deputy, Sue Minter (center). Photo by Morgan True/VTDigger

    Secretary of Transportation Brian Searles will retire Dec. 31 after four years at the helm. Deputy Secretary Sue Minter, who helped lead the state’s Irene recovery effort, will become the next head of the agency.

    VHC open enrollment off to a smooth start

    Vermont Health Connect feature

    The exchange’s application questions and user interface, which tripped up thousands of applicants last year, are much improved, according to state officials, and should create less problems going forward.

    Campaign for Vermont, GOP lawmakers join call for Gruber’s termination

    Critics of the governor’s health care reform plans seized on the impolitic remarks of MIT economist Jonathan Gruber on Monday, urging the Shumlin administration to terminate his contract with the state. The policy advocacy group Campaign for Vermont has started a petition demanding that Gruber’s $400,000 economic modeling contract for the state’s planned single-payer program […]

    Special Report: How a Rutland man’s trip to West Africa sparked a high-level state and federal response

    Peter Italia outside Conakry airport in Guinea with his friend and guide Francis, who is from Sierra Leone. Peter Italia Facebook photo

    How Peter Welch, Peter Shumlin, the state health department, the CDC and the FBI all suddenly became aware of Peter Italia’s visit to the Ebola region. And whether his rights were violated by quarantine.

    Officials confident on open enrollment; costs still a concern

    Dr. Harry Chen, interim Secretary of Human Services, and Lawrence Miller, chief of health care reform. VTDigger photo by Morgan True.

    The Vermont Health Connect website, offline since September, will go live on Nov. 15. State officials say the site will offer a better user experience, but some business will have to be done by phone or mail. There may also be cost overruns next year, when the state budget already faces a large deficit.

    Fletcher Allen becomes University of Vermont Medical Center

    UVM President Tom Sullivan (left) and Fletcher Allen CEO John Brumsted reveal the new branding for the University of Vermont Health Network. Photo by Morgan True/VTDigger

    In the final step of a rebranding process, Fletcher Allen Health Care has been renamed the University of Vermont Medical Center, and its regional network is now the University of Vermont Health Network. The system includes two Vermont hospitals and two in New York; further expansion is likely in both states.

    Blue Cross launches online open enrollment tools for businesses

    Blue Cross Blue Shield of Vermont announced Tuesday that its Web tools for small business users are now online. Businesses with 50 or fewer employees are required to purchase qualified health plans under the Affordable Care Act, but because the Vermont Health Connect exchange can’t accept business customers, the insurers are stepping in. Small businesses […]

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