Policy

July 10, 2017

If the cuts to Medicaid proposed under the Senate's Better Care Reconciliation Act were enacted, a health care advisory firm specializing in rural health care projects that nearly half of all rural hospitals would operate at a loss.

July 5, 2017

Almost a third of questions asked on recent internal medicine-MOC examinations were not relevant to general practice, according to a recent study in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

June 30, 2017

It is unclear whether or not the Better Care Reconciliation Act will enjoy the same fate. The American Society of Nephrology (ASN) certainly hopes not as witnessed with ASN’s publicly declared concerns about the bill earlier this week.  Regardless, we will not have to wait long to find out. With only ten legislative days in July before a month long August recess, the Senate doesn’t have much wiggle room on the calendar to complete its objective.

Let’s look at where we are in this process and how we got here.

June 30, 2017

ASN has urged the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Survey and Certification Group to delay implementation and foster dialogue regarding a policy concerning saline syringe filling practices. The policy is set to take effect by Sunday, July 2, 2017.  Addressed to state survey agency directors, the memorandum states that “ESRD facilities may not fill syringes with saline from the single dose saline bag or IV tubing connected to the patient at the dialysis station” whenever possible. 

June 26, 2017

Today, the American Society of Nephrology (ASN) voiced its concerns to the leadership of the US Senate that “the Better Care Reconciliation Act (the Senate version of Affordable Care Act repeal) passage would negatively impact millions of patients, particularly those with kidney failure, advanced kidney diseases, and other chronic illnesses.” You can read the letter here and a statement from ASN President Eleanor Lederer here.

June 22, 2017

Senate Republicans today released the Better Care Reconciliation Act, S. 1628, their plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare.  This is the Senate’s response to the American Health Care Act (AHCA), which the House passed in early May.  Like the House bill, the legislation is designed to repeal or revise portions of Obamacare, a law that congressional Republicans have opposed since its passage seven years ago.

What does the Better Care Reconciliation Act do, and how does it compare to the House’s AHCA?

June 21, 2017

Summertime is vacation time!  This week we are taking a brief field trip from Washington to explore the problems facing state individual healthcare marketplaces around the country.

June 19, 2017

The American Hospital Association sent a letter on June 13th, 2017 to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Service (CMS) requesting that the agency discontinue using the star ratings program, which AMA characterized as “deeply flawed” and as a source of regulatory burden on hospitals, health systems, and patients.

June 9, 2017

In our last installment, we tried to ground the conversation by laying out how Republican health care ideas impact you. You can review Part 10 of our series here.

May 26, 2017

Republican efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) broke onto the scene again this Wednesday May 24th. The rollercoaster of news and rumors around those efforts once again bring uncertainty to the lives of patients, physicians, and insurers nationwide. 

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