health care

Below-The-Radar Mergers Can Fuel Health Care Monopolies

Sep 6, 2017
FloridaHeartHospitals.com

Hospitals have gone on a doctor-buying spree in recent years, in many areas acquiring so many independent practices they have created near-monopolies on physicians.

With insurance premiums rising and national efforts at health reform in turmoil, a group of 50 state bureaucrats whom many voters probably can’t name have considerable power over consumers’ health plans: state insurance commissioners.

As insurers threaten to exit state markets and voters at town halls complain about unaffordable prices, the state commissioners are central characters in the unfolding drama that is America’s health coverage.

Too Few Patients Follow The Adage: Shop Around

Aug 21, 2017

Despite having more financial “skin in the game” than ever, many consumers don’t make any attempt to compare prices for health care services, a newly released study found.

WMFE

Jamie Kruger transitioned years ago to life as a man, both at home and at work. He got surgery four months ago, a mastectomy and reconstruction to give him a more masculine chest.

Women have a lot at stake in the fight over the future of health care.

Doctors Warm To Single-Payer Health Care

Aug 16, 2017
Arthur Giron / Kaiser Health News

Single-payer health care is still a controversial idea in the U.S., but a majority of physicians are moving to support it, a new survey finds.

Message to President Donald Trump and congressional Republicans: Stop trying to scuttle the Obama health care law, and start trying to make it more effective.

Wikimedia Commons

Hard-line conservatives began an uphill fight Friday to force a fresh House vote this fall on erasing much of President Barack Obama's health care law without an immediate replacement, the latest instance of Republican rifts in what's been a fractious week for the GOP.

Americans Want Leaders To Cooperate, Make Health Law Work

Aug 11, 2017
Gage Skidmore (Flickr)

Move on.

The Trump administration's own actions are triggering double-digit premium increases on individual health insurance policies purchased by many consumers, a nonpartisan study has found.

When a receptionist hands out a form to fill out at a doctor's office, the questions are usually about medical issues: What's the visit for? Are you allergic to anything? Up to date on vaccines?

But some health organizations are now asking much more general questions: Do you have trouble paying your bills? Do you feel safe at home? Do you have enough to eat? Research shows these factors can be as important to health as exercise habits or whether you get enough sleep.

Some doctors even think someone's ZIP code is as important to their health as their genetic code.

Under Trump, Hospitals Face Same Penalties Embraced By Obama

Aug 4, 2017

Amid all the turbulence over the future of the Affordable Care Act, one facet continues unchanged: President Donald Trump’s administration is penalizing more than half the nation’s hospitals for having too many patients return within a month.

Kaiser Health News

Carol Emanuele beat cancer. But for the past two years, she has been fighting her toughest battle yet. She has an open wound on the bottom of her foot that leaves her unable to walk and prone to deadly infection.

Who Knew Senate Health Bill Debate Could Be So Complicated?

Jul 26, 2017

So the Senate has voted to start debate on a bill to replace the Affordable Care Act. Now what?

Hospitals around the country are connecting patients with caregivers in a powerful new way, using simple pen and paper to give patients room to share their story. Using the communication tool called “My Story," health care providers like Lee Health now have large sheets of paper hanging in patients' rooms, giving family members a chance to share their loved one's past, hopes, and more.

Wikimedia Commons

Republican leaders pushed toward a Senate vote next Tuesday on resurrecting their nearly flat-lined health care bill. Their uphill drive was further complicated by the ailing GOP Sen. John McCain's potential absence and a dreary report envisioning that the number of uninsured Americans would soar.

Latinos Left Out Of Clinical Trials … And Possible Cures

Jul 19, 2017
nayara_msc / Flickr

Two decades ago, Luis Antonio Cabrera received devastating news: He likely had only three months to live.

Wikimedia Commons

House Democrats are calling foul on Republican assertions that cuts to a little-known discount drug program will eventually reduce skyrocketing drug prices.

In just 20 years, the number of Americans over the age of 65 will increase by 100 percent. That's roughly 80 million Americans, and as the LGBT community ages alongside their heterosexual friends and neighbors, doctors focused on that population say LGBT persons face unique concerns when it comes to aging, and a host of health care disparities ranging from housing discrimination to social isolation.

Health Bill Still Lacks Support, But GOP Vows Vote Next Week

Jul 14, 2017
WMFE

Senate Republican leaders Thursday released their revised bill to “repeal and replace” the Affordable Care Act, but they acknowledged that furious days of negotiation have not yet secured the 50 votes necessary to pass the measure over unanimous Democratic objections.

Senate Republican leaders are trotting out their new, but reeling, health care bill and angling toward a showdown vote next week amid signs that they have lots of work ahead to win over GOP lawmakers or face a resounding failure.

The number of U.S. adults without health insurance has grown by some 2 million this year, according to a major new survey that finds recent coverage gains beginning to erode.

The new numbers highlight what's at stake as Congress returns to an unresolved debate over Republican proposals to roll back much of former President Barack Obama's health care law.

Healthcare.gov

The health care legislation under discussion in the Senate could allow states to remove some of the Affordable Care Act’s consumer protections — including the prohibition that keeps insurers from limiting how much they’ll pay for medically needyexpensive patients. Clara Hardy’s parents worry about the Senate bill for just this reason.

More than 100 workers at Miami International Airport are striking for 24 hours.

Subcontractors tasked with handling baggage, curbside check-in and pushing wheelchairs for various airlines are walking off the job in protest of what they say are violations of the Miami-Dade County living-wage ordinance.

Senate Republicans would cut Medicaid, end penalties for people not buying insurance and erase a raft of tax increases as part of their long-awaited plan to scuttle President Barack Obama's health care law, congressional aides and lobbyists say.

Protests Ahead Of Major Health Care Bill Debut

Jun 22, 2017
iStock

Senate Republicans have not revealed details of their plan to replace the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, but that didn’t stop a group of protesters from gathering on Wednesday at Sen. Marco Rubio’s Orlando office.

Republicans are angling toward a Senate vote next week on their marquee effort to erase much of President Barack Obama’s health care law. But there’s plenty of grumbling from senators across the GOP spectrum, and leaders haven’t yet nailed down the support they’ll need to prevail.

Centene

Centene announced it will offer health insurance plans on Florida's Affordable Care Act exchange for the first time, joining Florida Blue and Molina, who will also remain in the market. This week's news comes as several insurers have pulled out of the exchange amid uncertainties about subsidies and other changes under a Republican replacement.

Satori World Medical / Flickr

Republicans are taking a big political risk on health care.

WMFE

Senate Republican leaders plan to vote as soon as this month on major health care legislation even though they remain uncertain, for now, whether their still-unwritten bill will pass, lawmakers said Monday.

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