August 31, 2009

August 31: Health Care Reform News

By Kelley Luckstein

Your turn: Bipartisan health care reforms exist
Health care reform is on everybody’s mind. And with good reason.


We have the highest quality health care in the world. Look no further than Minnesota’s Mayo Clinic,

U.S. Rep. Michele Bachman

U.S. Rep. Michele Bachman

 which is a world-class destination for care. But high costs put health care out of reach for millions of Americans, especially middle-class families that make too much for government subsidies but struggle to pay the bills. Similarly, small-business owners struggle because they cannot use big business’ economies of scale to get affordable coverage.


We must do something to contain costs and make the high-quality care we have more accessible to everyone.


While the government-run approach, also known as the public option or co-op, is getting the most notice, there are actually a number of less dramatic alternatives that can really make a big difference. Moreover, while some in Washington are talking about what’s being called the “nuclear option,” or a Democratic Congress and White House joining together to pass their reform proposals with no Republican input, many of these lesser-known alternatives individually have broad bipartisan support.


St. Cloud Times by U.S. Rep. Michele Bachman, 08/30/09


Top stories


What The 'Gang Of Six' Wants From Health Care Bill


Aug. 28, 2009


If there is any hope of passing a bipartisan health care bill in the Senate, it may well lie with a key group of senators known as the Gang of Six.  Here's a look at the concerns each brings to the negotiating table.

Dem Split on the Public Option Casts Doubt on Reform of Healthcare

The Hill
Aug. 31, 2009


Democratic aides and lawmakers are questioning how their party can pass a health reform bill next month with centrists and liberals at odds over a core aspect of the legislation.


Kennedy Death Lessens Chances of Broad Health Bill, Hatch Says

Aug. 31, 2009


Congress is less likely to pass sweeping health-care overhaul legislation following the death of Senator Edward Kennedy, a leading Republican said yesterday.




Health Insurance: How Much More Should Older People Pay?

Kaiser Health News

Aug. 31, 2009


For years, insurers have charged older customers far more than younger ones, in part because of older residents’ higher use of medical services. Now, as Congress wrestles with a health care overhaul aimed at covering the majority of the 46 million uninsured, that discrepancy is one area targeted for change.




Health Bill Would Cut Drug Spending for Many on Medicare, Budget Office Says

The New York Times

Aug. 30, 2009


Medicare beneficiaries would often have to pay higher premiums for prescription drug coverage, but many would see their total drug spending decline, so they would save money as a result of health legislation moving through the House, the Congressional Budget Office said in a recent report.


Reform efforts


Hospital Executives Worry About the 'What-Ifs' of Reform

The Washington Post

Aug. 31, 2009


Anxiety is running high among hospital executives as they ponder the ever-changing proposals on Capitol Hill.


Reactions to Health Bill Make Some Democrats Wary

The Wall Street Journal
Aug. 29, 2009


Widespread concerns lawmakers heard from constituents during the August recess have left some Democrats viewing proposed health-care legislation more warily.


Health-Care Reform, One Stop at a Time
The Washington Post

Aug. 31, 2009

President Obama's supporters hope to recapture the energy of last year's triumphant election campaign in a bid to regain control of the health-care debate, planning more than 2,000 house parties, rallies and town hall meetings across the country over the next two weeks.

Sebelius: Health Reform Will Reduce Medicare Costs, Coverage Threats
HealthLeaders Media
Aug. 28, 2009

HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius continues to press the need for healthcare reform with the release this week of a new government-sponsored report that highlights the escalating cost of healthcare and the threats to coverage for seniors.  Click here to read the report.

The Selling of the Policy

The New York Times

Aug. 28, 2009


A health care reform Q&A with Tom Daschle.


Fighting Health Care Overhaul, and Proud of It

The New York Times

Aug. 31, 2009


Senator Jim DeMint, a first-term Republican from South Carolina, is gaining attention as he stokes anger over the health care issue.




Rising Healthcare Costs Hurting Industries with Most Employer-Sponsored Insurance

HealthLeaders Media

Aug. 31, 2009

Rapidly rising healthcare costs, which are taking up greater portions of the gross domestic product (GDP), are having an adverse effect on many major industries—especially those that have higher percentages of workers with employer-sponsored insurance, according to a new study from Rand.

Health Information Technology


HHS to Dole Out $1.2 Billion for Health IT Grants

American Medical Association News

Aug. 31, 2009


The Obama administration will make available nearly $1.2 billion in federal grants to create a large network of regional health information technology centers and state-based entities to support physicians and hospitals as they acquire and implement electronic health records systems that meet federal standards.



Tags: health care reform, Health Policy, Health Policy

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