December 16th, 2009

December 16: Health Care Reform News

By Kelley Luckstein

Hospital, physician lobbyists fought Medicare buy-in plan

Four days before the Senate jettisoned the idea of expanding Medicare to younger Americans, a dozen Senate Democrats, including some of the chamber's most liberal members, dispatched a stern letter warning that the proposal would make it harder for elderly patients in parts of the country to find care…

 

Four days before the Senate jettisoned the idea of expanding Medicare to younger Americans, a dozen Senate Democrats, including some of the chamber's most liberal members, dispatched a stern letter warning that the proposal would make it harder for elderly patients in parts of the country to find care…

 

On Friday, Mayo Clinic officials called Marshfield and suggested a news conference to blast the provision. That same day, the letter was signed. "The senators came through," Ulrich said.

 

Washington Post, by Amy Goldstein, 12/15/09

 

Additional Mayo Clinic health care reform coverage:

Albert Lea Tribune

 

 

Top stories

 

Obama Health Care Meeting Aims to Rally Senators

The New York Times
Dec. 15, 2009

 

President Obama urged Senate Democrats to bury their differences and pass sweeping health legislation within the next nine days.

 

Related:
Democrats Urged to Act on Health , The Wall Street Journal

Dems Ready to Push Health Bill Despite Setbacks, AP/The Washington Post

Obama Urges Senate to Pass Health-Care Bill; Lieberman Signals Support, The Washington Post

Obama: 'On the Precipice' of Health Care Change, Though 'Differences' Remain, USA Today

 

Hospital, Physician Lobbyists Fought Medicare Buy-In Plan

The Washington Post

Dec. 16, 2009

 

A chronicle of the short, rocky life of the Medicare buy-in.

 

State news

 

Primary Care For All In This Rhode Island Town

Kaiser Health News
Dec. 15, 2009

 

Scituate, R.I., with its population of 10,000, has some big ideas about keeping its residents healthy. The town has created a means for all of its residents to have access to the most basic types of preventive health care, regardless of their ability to pay.

 

Wis.: State Health Programs for the Poor Face New Budget Crisis

The Wisconsin State Journal

Dec. 15, 2009

 

A flood of newly impoverished participants in state health programs for the poor could send those initiatives as much as $150 million into the red, a legislative report found.

 

Medicare/Medicaid

 

Congress and Medicare: Letting Go Is Hard to Do

Kaiser Health News
Dec. 15, 2009

In an effort to rein in health costs, Senate Democrats are proposing steps that would give federal agencies more power to overhaul how Medicare pays for medical care – and thus reduce Congress’ own role in running the giant program for the elderly.

But the big question is: Could Congress really bring itself to surrender power over a program as politically sensitive as Medicare?

 

Feds: 32 Charged With Medicare Fraud

CNN
Dec. 15, 2009

 

Federal agents announced they have broken up five separate rings that allegedly filed $61 million in false claims with Medicare, and charged 32 people in Miami, Florida; Detroit, Michigan; and Brooklyn, New York, with a variety of schemes to defraud the healthcare system for the elderly and disabled.

 

Reform efforts

 

Public Cooling to Health-Care Reform as Debate Drags on, Poll Finds

The Washington Post

Dec. 16, 2009

 

As the Senate struggles to meet a self-imposed, year-end deadline to complete work on legislation to overhaul the nation's health-care system, a new Washington Post-ABC News poll finds the public generally fearful that a revamped system would bring higher costs while worsening the quality of their care.

 

Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act/Cloture Process and Timeline

Sen. Dick Durbin’s office/Politico

 

A helpful timeline laying out the steps from cloture to final passage, a process that takes about six days, minimum.

 

Angry Liberals: Why Didn't Obama Fight?

Politico
Dec. 15, 2009

 

More than anything else in Barack Obama’s presidency so far, health reform has exposed a get-a-deal-at-any-cost side of Obama that infuriates his party’s progressives.

 

Daschle Had Public and Private Role in Push for Digital Health Records

The Huffington Post

Dec. 15, 2009

 

In the government's campaign to bring medical care into the digital age, former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle has served as a key advisor to President Obama and a consultant to the health-care industry--doing both within the space of a few months.

 

Prescription drugs

 

Measure to Allow Drug Imports Fails

The Wall Street Journal

Dec. 16, 2009

 

A measure to allow the importation of cheaper prescription drugs from Canada and some other countries fell short in the Senate.

 

Health Information Technology

 

Caregiving in the USA - the Burden Intensifies, and Technology's Promise

HealthPopuli
Dec. 16, 2009

 

Approximately 1 in 3 people in the U.S. plays the role of unpaid caregiver to a family member. This challenge will persist and the burden will intensify as the population ages through the miracles of medicine. Enter technology and telecommunications, which hold potential to help ease this burden.

Tags: health care reform, Health Policy, Health Policy

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