January 18th, 2010

January 18: Health Care Reform News

By Kelley Luckstein

TOP STORIES

Hoping It Won’t Be Needed; Democrats Ponder a Backup Plan on Health Care Bill

The New York Times

January 18, 2010

 

For the moment, at least, the preferred Plan B would be to try to persuade House Democrats to approve the health care bill the Senate adopted on Christmas Eve, obviating the need for an additional Senate vote and sending the measure directly to President Obama for his signature.

 

Democrats Look at Bypassing Senate Health Care Vote

The Huffington Post

January 18, 2010

 

A panicky White House and Democratic allies scrambled Sunday for a plan to salvage their health care package in case a Republican wins Tuesday's Senate race in Massachusetts, enabling the GOP to block further Senate action.

 

Additional Coverage

Dems to Bypass Senate Health Care Vote? - Time

 

Health Negotiators Search for More Revenue

The Wall Street Journal

January 18, 2010

 

Criticism of union’s five-year exemption mounts as lawmakers and the White House consider ways to pay for it.

 

TRANSPARENCY/SAFETY

Global Health Care Fraud Costs Put at $260 Billion

Reuters

January 18, 2010

 

Some 180 billion euros ($260 billion) is lost globally to fraud and error in health care.

 

WELLNESS/CHRONIC CARE

Health Overhaul Leaves Gap for Disabled Workers

The Washington Post

January 18, 2010

 

Although disabled workers can expect improvements, the legislation moving toward final passage in Congress doesn't deliver the clean fix for people with serious medical conditions.

 

STATE NEWS

Health Plan Tax Would Hit California Hard

The San Francisco Chronicle

January 18, 2010

 

California could be disproportionately hit by a proposed annual tax in the national health overhaul legislation that penalizes restrictive managed-care policies - far more popular in the state than in the rest of the country.

 

Echoes of 1991 Health Care Upset

Politico

January 18, 2010

 

The uncertainty surrounding the suddenly-too-close-to-call Massachusetts Senate special election has political handicappers and strategists wondering if they’ve seen this before when long-shot Democrat Harris Wofford seized on the health care issue to pull off a shocking Pennsylvania special election victory.

Rating Drops Below 50% for Nelson

Omaha World Herald

January 18, 2010

 

Nelson, who once enjoyed some of the highest job performance marks in the U.S. Senate, has now seen his approval rating dip below 50 percent.

 

 

MEDICARE/MEDICAID

Medicaid Provision for Nebraska Raises Ire

The Washington Post

January 18, 2010

 

A single paragraph added at the last minute of the Senate's health care bill made a promise that the federal government would pay forever for extra poor people to join Medicaid in Nebraska, and it triggered a tremendous partisan backlash. 

 

 

REFORM EFFORTS

Cadillac Plans

The New York Times - Op-Ed

January 15, 2010

 

The agreement between the White House, Congressional leaders and labor unions over taxing high-priced health insurance policies is a reasonable solution to an issue that was threatening to derail health care reform.

 

His Health Care Agenda at Risk, Obama Stumps in Massachusetts

The Washington Post

January 18, 2010

 

President Obama made a last-ditch effort to resurrect the candidacy of a struggling Democrat who could provide him a critical Senate vote for health care reform.

 

Industries Asked to Pay Up for Reform

Politico

January 15, 2010

 

Democrats are leaning on key industries to provide more money to help pay for their health care bill - squeezing $10 billion more out of the drug industry, asked nursing homes for an extra $1 billion, and looking to hospitals and insurance companies to potentially kick in more than expected.

 

 

PRESCRIPTION DRUGS

Biotech Group May Back Brown

Politico

January 18, 2010

 

The down-to-the-wire Senate race in Massachusetts has given the biotechnology industry some much-needed leverage in the health care fight.

 

 

EMPLOYERS

Misleading Claims About Safeway Wellness Incentives Shape Health Care Bill

The Washington Post

January 18, 2010

 

In a legislative debate filled with misconceptions, few rival the myth about Safeway, which has become the poster company for a provision that big employers and insurers covet.

 

 

HEALTH INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY

Digital Health Records:  Putting Privacy on Par with Efficiency

CNN Money

January 18, 2010

 

Privacy is a key concern for many Americans as this country moves to modernize its health care system with electronic health records.  As we spend billions of dollars to go digital, are we putting privacy and security safeguards in place to build public trust?

 

 

MISCELLANEOUS

Brown Win Could Spark Legal Battle

Politico

January 18, 2010

 

A victory by Republican Scott Brown tomorrow in Massachusetts could quickly turn into a legal battle over the man he would replace - with the future of health reform in the Senate hanging in the balance.

Tags: health care reform, Health Policy, Health Policy

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