Julie Rovner

Casa de Salud, a nonprofit clinic in Albuquerque, N.M., provides primary medical care, opioid addiction services and non-Western therapies, including acupuncture and reiki, to a largely low-income population.

And as with so many other health care institutions that serve as a safety net, this clinic's revenue — and its future — are threatened by the COVID-19 pandemic.

In one of his first proposals since becoming the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, Joe Biden is wading back into the roiling waters of health policy.

In a nod to the effects of COVID-19 on the economy, and in what is clearly an overture to supporters of the "Medicare for All" plan pushed by Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, Biden wants to lower the age of eligibility for Medicare from 65 to 60.

Health care has been a leading issue in the presidential campaign over the past year, as Democratic candidates have clashed with each other, and especially with President Trump. But voters, who tell pollsters that health is among their top concerns, also complain that the health debate has been confusing and hard to follow.

With voting about to begin in many states, here's a guide to some key health care terms, issues and policy differences at play.

Universal coverage, "Medicare for All" and single-payer are not the same thing

Jan. 22 marks the 47th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the landmark court case that legalized abortion nationwide. People on both sides of the furious debate say this could be the year when everything changes.

In March, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear its first abortion case since Justice Brett Kavanaugh replaced Anthony Kennedy, who had been the swing vote on abortion cases. A decision is expected by summer.

You're forgiven if in the holiday blur you missed that a federal appeals court in New Orleans has once again put the future of the Affordable Care Act in doubt. Or if you missed the news last week that a group of Democratic state attorneys general has asked the Supreme Court to hear the case in this term — which ends in June. That would mean a decision could come right in the middle of the 2020 presidential and congressional campaigns.

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