Blue Cross and Blue Shield Companies to Launch Retiree Health Insurance Exchange BlueCross BlueShield Association, April 24, 2015 Blue Cross and Blue Shield (BCBS) companies will launch a health insurance exchange this summer that will support employers’ efforts to help retirees transition from group health benefits to individual Medicare coverage that starts Jan. 1, 2016. […]
Medicaid Rebates for Brand-Name Drugs Exceeded Part D Rebates by a Substantial Margin Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General, April 2015 Conclusion Drug rebates reduce the program costs of both Medicare Part D and Medicaid. Medicaid rebates are defined by statute and include additional rebates when prices for brand-name drugs increase […]
Why Section 1332 Could Solve the Obamacare Impasse By Stuart Butler, PhD The JAMA Forum, April 28, 2015 Section 1332 of the ACA, known as “State Innovation Waivers,” allows states, starting in 2017, to apply to the federal government for 5-year renewable waivers from key provisions of the legislation. For instance, states could request changes […]
Pharmaceutical Companies Buy Rivals’ Drugs, Then Jack Up the Prices By Jonathan D. Rockoff and Ed Silverman The Wall Street Journal, April 26, 2015 On Feb. 10, Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. bought the rights to a pair of life-saving heart drugs. The same day, their list prices rose by 525% and 212%. Neither of the […]
The Demise of Vermont’s Single-Payer Plan By John E. McDonough, Dr.P.H., M.P.A. The New England Journal of Medicine, April 23, 2015 On December 17, 2014, Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin publicly ended his administration’s 4-year initiative to develop, enact, and implement a single-payer health care system in his state. In reality, the Vermont plan was abandoned […]
Teva Offers to Buy Mylan in $40.1B Cash-and-Stock Deal By Linda A. Johnson, AP ABC News, April 21, 2015 Generic drug giant Teva formally offered to buy fellow drugmaker Mylan for about $40.1 billion in cash and stock on Tuesday, despite Mylan’s cold shoulder and the certainty the proposed acquisition will bring intense scrutiny by […]
Obamacare, Hands Off My Medicare By Thomas B. Edsall The New York Times, April 22, 2015 A number of factors underpin the anti-redistributionist shift in public opinion that I wrote about last week. First, and perhaps most important, is the emergence of significant resistance to downward redistribution among the elderly, a major voting bloc. The […]
State questions rise in overdose drug price By Brian MacQuarrie The Boston Globe, April 20, 2015 Attorney General Maura Healey is demanding that companies selling naloxone in Massachusetts explain why the cost of the drug, which is used to reverse heroin overdoses, has skyrocketed since former governor Deval Patrick declared a public health emergency a […]
Has Obamacare Turned Voters Against Sharing the Wealth? By Thomas B. Edsall The New York Times, April 15, 2015 With the advent of the Affordable Care Act, the share of Americans convinced that health care is a right shrank from a majority to a minority. This shift in public opinion is a major victory for […]
Public vs. Private Health Insurance on Controlling Spending By Drew Altman The Wall Street Journal, April 16, 2015 The Federal Office of the Actuary in the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has charted the annual rate of increase in spending for Medicare, Medicaid, and private health insurance. As the chart (at the link below) […]
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