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U.S. health reforms to be clear, transparent
Reuters    Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
U.S. health officials aim to move swiftly and clearly to implement newly enacted healthcare reforms, health secretary Kathleen Sebelius said on Tuesday in remarks aimed at selling Americans on the benefits of the controversial changes. National and state regulators will also keep a close eye on private health insurance companies to ensure that they comply with new rules, Sebelius said in a speech. "For years, Americans have struggled with a health insurance system that was opaque, unnecessarily confusing, and often overwhelming to navigate," she told the National Press Club. "Our goal as we implement this law is to be the opposite of that -- to be as clear and transparent as possible." More



Senator raises concerns about medicare fraud at 'phantom pharmacies'
ABC News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Federal health officials have failed to police the emergence of phantom pharmacies – fly-by-night storefront operations that bill millions of dollars in false Medicare bills and then vanish -- according to Sen. Charles Grassley. The Iowa Republican wrote to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius Monday to ask why complaints about what he termed "phantom pharmacies" have repeatedly gone unanswered by her agency. More

Looking hard for health care reform winners
Forbes    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
On March 21 the House passed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, along with the Health Care and Education Tax Credits Reconciliation Act. The combination of the two bills permitted the Senate to pass its changes to the health care legislation with only 51 votes, rather than a 60-vote super-majority. This massive legislation will fundamentally change the American health care system and who pays for it. While providing health care to 32 million uninsured Americans, the cost of that coverage will be very substantial. More

Private companies would manage Florida Medicaid
The Associated Press via the Miami Herald    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Florida's Medicaid system would be drastically revamped with nearly all patients getting managed care provided by private companies under legislation proposed Tuesday in the Florida House. The two proposed committee bills are aimed at reducing the soaring cost of the state-federal health care program for low-income and disabled patients. Legislative staffers are forecasting savings of least 2 percent or 3 percent to as much as 15 percent. More

State, insurers up the ante over health rates
The Boston Globe    Share    Share on
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The stand-off between Massachusetts regulators and health insurance companies intensified today as most insurers stopped offering new coverage to small businesses and individuals while state officials demanded that the insurers post updated rates online and resume selling such policies by the end of the week. People seeking to buy health insurance for the first time, or existing customers looking to change policies, found themselves out of luck, at least temporarily, in the aftermath of last week's decision by the state Division of Insurance to reject 235 of 274 premium increases proposed by insurers for what is known as the small group market. The segment covers about 800,000 residents. More



In Medicine, the power of no
The New York Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
How can we learn to say no? The federal government is now starting to build the institutions that will try to reduce the soaring growth of health care costs. There will be a group to compare the effectiveness of different treatments, a so-called Medicare innovation center and a Medicare oversight board that can set payment rates. More

New health care law is full of unknowns
The Los Angeles Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
As hospitals, clinics and doctors prepare for the coming changes, little is certain except that it will be a process of discovery for all. About the only thing Dr. Philip Schwarzman can be sure of under the national health care overhaul is that he is adding his daughters, ages 23 and 25, to his health plan immediately. More

Meet the man who will run Medicare and Medicaid
The Atlantic    Share    Share on
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Every once in awhile, those in government actually appoint the perfect person to do an important job at a critical time. Very soon, President Obama will nominate Dr. Donald Berwick to run Medicare and Medicaid. He is the right man at the right time. He has a passion for improving the quality of health care even as he demands that it be more efficient, less expensive and more attentive to the needs of patients. More

Health care reform may worsen doctor shortage
Deseret News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Primary care physicians already are in short supply in parts of the country, and the landmark health overhaul that will bring them millions more newly insured patients in the next few years promises extra strain. The new law goes beyond offering coverage to the uninsured, with steps to improve the quality of care for the average person and help keep us well instead of today's seek-care-after-you're-sick culture. To benefit, you'll need a regular health provider. More

Paving the path to progress with a roadmap for health IT
Health Information Technology    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) is responsible for putting forward a vision for nationwide, interoperable health IT. Our work requires that we also support the creation of a learning health system that is patient-centered and uses information to continuously improve health and health care of individuals and the population. We have begun to get input for a detailed roadmap outlining goals, principles, objectives, strategies, and tactics toward this effort. This roadmap will pave the way to our vision and help keep us accountable. More
 
 

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