December 29, 2009

December 29: Health Care Reform News

By Kelley Luckstein

Top stories


Public Option May Be Dropped From Final Health Care Bill


Dec. 28, 2009


House Democrats are signaling that a final healthcare bill will drop the government-run public health insurance option.


State news


Health Lobby Takes Fight to the States

The New York Times
Dec. 28, 2009


Like about a dozen other states, Florida is debating a proposed amendment to its state constitution that would try to block, at least symbolically, much of the proposed federal health care overhaul on the grounds that it tramples individual liberty.


But what unites the proposal’s legislative backers is more than ideology. Its 42 co-sponsors, all Republicans, were almost all recipients of outsized campaign contributions from major health care interests.


GAO: Retiree Health Spending Remains Underfunded in Many States

HealthLeaders Media

Dec. 29, 2009


Health-related spending represents the fastest growing component in state government budgets throughout the United States. And, while Medicaid will remain the largest health-related expenditure component among state governments for now and the near future, spending on state and local government retirees' health benefits is projected to more than double as a share of total operating revenues to 2.1% by 2050.


UMass Memorial Has $91.6m Surplus

The Boston Globe
Dec. 29, 2009


Hospital system UMass Memorial Health Care Inc. posted a $91.6 million surplus during the recently completed fiscal year by cutting its costs, deferring some purchases, treating more patients, and reversing investment losses.




Expanding Health Coverage and Shoring Up Medicare: Is It Double-Counting?

The New York Times
Dec. 28, 2008


Separate bills passed by the Senate and the House would squeeze nearly a half-trillion dollars from projected spending on Medicare over the next 10 years, and these savings would help offset the cost of providing coverage to people who are uninsured. At the same time, federal accountants say the money would shore up the Medicare trust fund, so the program could continue paying hospitals to treat older Americans in the future, the New York Times reports.



Cardiologists Sue Sebelius Over Medicare Fee Cuts

USA Today
Dec. 28, 2009


Heart specialists have filed suit against Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius in an effort to stave off steep Medicare fee cuts for routine office-based procedures.


Reform efforts


An Underground Campaign

The New York Times
Dec. 28, 2009


Trying to fend off any limits to patient lawsuits, the trial lawyers’ association is aiming to reach lawmakers and their aides through ads at Union Station on Capitol Hill.


A History of Overhauling Health Care

The New York Times

An interactive timeline of health care reform going back to 1912.




Businesses to Push for Modifications to Senate Bill

The Wall Street Journal

Dec. 28, 2009


Businesses are set to push for modifications to the Senate-approved health bill, while urging lawmakers to steer clear of the version passed by the House.


Tags: health care reform, Health Policy, Health Policy

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