November 20: Health Care Reform News

Posted on November 20th, 2009 by Kelley Luckstein

TOP STORIES

Senate Health Care Bill Faces Crucial First Vote

The New York Times

November 20, 2009

 

The Senate is expected to vote Nov. 21 on whether to take up health legislation that would cover five million fewer people than a companion bill passed by the House, but would cost less.

 

Additional Coverage:

Reid Pushes for Votes on Health Care Bill - The Washington Post

 

House Democrats Approve Doc ‘Fix’

The New York Times

November 20, 2009

 

The House has approved a $210 billion measure to avert steep cuts in Medicare payments to doctors.

 

Health Care’s ‘Public Option Would Cover Little of Population

USA Today

November 20, 2009

 

A proposed government-run health insurance program, among the most divisive issues in the health care debate, would cover less than 1.5% of the population, new estimates show.

 

A Leap Forward to Better Care

The Washington Post - Op-Ed

November 20, 2009

 

The nation stands on the verge of achieving fundamental health-care reform, but health reform has an economic and fiscal dimension, too.

 

 

TRANSPARENCY/SAFETY

Hard Math for Dems and Middle Class

Politico

November 20, 2009

 

Next month, Reid’s Democrats face immediate new challenges, including a $925 billion debt ceiling increase and a social safety net that’s unraveling even as unemployment has topped 10 percent.

 

 

WELLNESS/CHRONIC CARE

Group Issues Clarification on Mammography Advice

The Wall Street Journal

November 20, 2009

 

Seeking to dispel confusion over some aspects of the new guidelines, a federal task-force said they never meant to convey that women in their 40s shouldn't get mammograms, nor that they sought to discourage women from examining their breasts for signs of cancer.

 

 

STATE NEWS

Illinois Launches Web Site with Hospital Prices, Quality Ratings

The Chicago Tribune

November 20, 2009

 

A new, state-sponsored Web site publishes data on Illinois hospitals and surgery centers that includes information about what these medical providers charge, how many procedures they perform, how often they deliver recommended care, and how consumers rate their care.

 

MEDICARE/MEDICAID

Medicare Tax on High Earners and Other Levies Stir Debate

The Wall Street Journal

November 20, 2009

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid made a late change to his bill by adding an extra Medicare payroll tax, which would generate $54 billion over 10 years.  Under the plan, wages over $200,000 for single people and $250,000 for married couples would be subject to a 1.95% payroll tax, up from the current 1.45%.

Dems’ Health Hits Medicare Third Rail

Politico

November 20, 2009

 

Forget Social Security as the third rail of American politics. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s new health care reform proposal is further proof that Capitol Hill Democrats are following an electorally suicidal strategy of turning Medicare into a political electric chair.

 

 

REFORM EFFORTS

Reid, as Legislative Tactician, Takes Ownership of Health Care Overhaul

The New York Times

November 20, 2009

 

The majority leader’s deep personal involvement in assembling the overhaul of the health care system, now on the brink of a historic Senate debate, has conferred ownership of the legislation on Mr. Reid.

 

Dems Stay Cautiously Optimistic

Politico

November 20, 2009

 

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and fellow Democrats projected confidence they could clear the first hurdle for health reform, a rare Saturday vote to open debate on the sweeping measure.

 

A Health Care Pep Talk for Senate Dems

Time

November 20, 2009

 

A platoon of top strategists met with Democratic Senators Thursday afternoon to impress upon those who might be wavering that everyone's political fate is now joined with the success or failure of President Obama's top domestic priority.

 

Democrats Woo Voters with New Benefits

The Wall Street Journal

November 20, 2009

 

Senate Democrats are touting the immediate benefits their health bill would bring to some Americans, although many of the benefits of the bill won't take effect for several years. 

 
 Sebelius’s Cave-In on Mammograms is a Setback for Health Care Reform

The Washington Post - Op-Ed

November 20, 2009

 

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius did a marvelous job this week of undermining the move toward evidence-based medicine with her hasty and cowardly disavowal of a recommendation from her department's own task force that women under 50 are probably better off not getting routine annual mammograms.

 

 

EMPLOYERS

Business Sours on Overhaul As Legislation Veers to Left

The Wall Street Journal

November 20, 2009

 

Chances of business supporting the Obama administration's health overhaul are fading fast, after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's bill took a liberal turn.

 

 

HEALTH INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY

Electronic Medical Records Don’t Save Money Says Study

Healthleaders Media

November 20, 2009

 

The latest study, published today in The American Journal of Medicine, says that despite Congressional support to the tune of $19 billion, claims of efficiencies from computerizing hospital system records rest on scant data.

Tags: health care reform, Health Policy, Health Policy

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