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Leading liberal policy group unveils 'coverage for all' plan
New plan from liberal policy group calls for 'Medicare Extra' to guarantee coverage for all, but keeps role for employers and private insurance (Source: ABC News: Health)
Source: ABC News: Health - February 22, 2018 Category: Consumer Health News Tags: Health Source Type: news

Medicare Part D Discounts Cover Biosimilar Drugs
1 day ago ... Brzica adds that although the change will not have an immediate effect on beneficiaries' out-of-pocket costs, “the inclusion of biosimilars in the Medicare formulary will ultimately lead to lower premiums for them.” The AARP Public Policy Institute found that the average annual cost for a biologic drug used on ... (Source: AARP.org News)
Source: AARP.org News - February 22, 2018 Category: American Health Source Type: news

Rural/Urban Disparities in Pneumococcal Vaccine Service Delivery Among the Fee-for-Service Medicare Population
The objective of this study was to identify rural versus urban disparities in pneumococcal vaccine provision in the elderly (age 65 or older) adult population and assess the impact of pharmacy as an alternate site provider in rural communities. (Source: HSR Information Central)
Source: HSR Information Central - February 22, 2018 Category: International Medicine & Public Health Source Type: news

Radiologists serve sicker patients than other specialties
Radiologists on average serve Medicare beneficiaries of higher clinical complexity...Read more on AuntMinnie.comRelated Reading: What radiologists should know about 2018 MIPS changes Study: States committed to value-based payment models MedPAC considers repeal of MIPS value program CMS proposes revisions to simplify MACRA ISCT: Who's responsible for radiology's value chain? (Source: AuntMinnie.com Headlines)
Source: AuntMinnie.com Headlines - February 22, 2018 Category: Radiology Source Type: news

What Is Really Driving High Prescription Drug Costs and What Can Congress and the Administration Do to Rein Them In?
There is broad agreement that lowering prescription drug costs is a priority -- millions of consumers desperately need more affordable medications and costs are expected to rise substantially this year. Both Congress and the White House have recently taken steps to address the issue. The President’s budget includes a package of proposals aimed at cutting prescription drug costs in Medicare and Medicaid and expanding access to generic drugs. In addition, provisions in the Bipartisan Budget Act signed into law on Feb. 9 will close a loophole in the Medicaid rebate program and lower government spending in the Medicare P...
Source: The Commonwealth Fund: Newsroom - February 21, 2018 Category: International Medicine & Public Health Source Type: news

Blue Earth touts addition of Axumin to NCCN guidelines
Blue Earth Diagnostics said that its Axumin (fluciclovine F-18) PET radiopharmaceutical...Read more on AuntMinnie.comRelated Reading: Blue Earth highlights Axumin clinical results at ASTRO Blue Earth touts Axumin reader training results Novel PET tracer aids recurrent prostate cancer patients Medicare coverage gets easier for oncologic PET tracers Blue Earth PET radiotracer IDs prostate cancer recurrence (Source: AuntMinnie.com Headlines)
Source: AuntMinnie.com Headlines - February 20, 2018 Category: Radiology Source Type: news

Idaho aims to test ACA exemptions
Idaho wants to offer an insurance plan that could skirt provisions of the Affordable Care Act. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar told a U.S. House Energy& Commerce Committee last week that he is considering whether to allow Blue Cross of Idaho implement its new Freedom Blue plan, which the insurer says lowers premiums by 50 percent, The Wall Street Journal reports. If Azar and Centers for Medicare& Medicaid Services director Seema Verma OK the move, other insurers might follow in … (Source: bizjournals.com Health Care:Pharmaceuticals headlines)
Source: bizjournals.com Health Care:Pharmaceuticals headlines - February 20, 2018 Category: Pharmaceuticals Authors: Betsey Guzior Source Type: news

Public Inspection: CMS: Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request
Pre-publication notice from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services requesting public comment on two separate items: the evaluation of the Partnership for Patients (PfP) program, specifically the Hospital Improvement Innovation Networks (HIIN) initiative; and Hospice Conditions of Participation. Comments must be submitted within 30 days of final publication in the Federal Register, which is scheduled for February 21, 2018. (Source: Federal Register updates via the Rural Assistance Center)
Source: Federal Register updates via the Rural Assistance Center - February 20, 2018 Category: Rural Health Source Type: news

CMS: Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request
Notice from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services requesting public comment on two separate items: the evaluation of the Partnership for Patients (PfP) program, specifically the Hospital Improvement Innovation Networks (HIIN) initiative; and Hospice Conditions of Participation. Comments must be submitted by March 23, 2018. (Source: Federal Register updates via the Rural Assistance Center)
Source: Federal Register updates via the Rural Assistance Center - February 20, 2018 Category: Rural Health Source Type: news

Hospital charges for outpatient cancer care highly variable, Medicare billing records show
(Johns Hopkins Medicine) An analysis of recent Medicare billing records for more than 3,000 hospitals across the United States shows that charges for outpatient oncology services such as chemo infusion or radiation treatment vary widely and exceed what Medicare will pay by twofold to sixfold. (Source: EurekAlert! - Medicine and Health)
Source: EurekAlert! - Medicine and Health - February 20, 2018 Category: International Medicine & Public Health Source Type: news

Rural WNY hospitals to receive $9 million from feds
New legislation at the federal level will provide rural hospitals with $9 million over the next five years, helping to relieve at least a little bit of funding uncertainty. The funds come through the extension of two programs that were included in the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018. Both programs expired last October.  The Low-Volume Hospital (LVH) program provides funding to the rural hospitals deemed critical to the community but may not serve a high volume of pat ients. The Medicare-Dependent… (Source: bizjournals.com Health Care:Physician Practices headlines)
Source: bizjournals.com Health Care:Physician Practices headlines - February 17, 2018 Category: American Health Authors: Tracey Drury Source Type: news

Rural WNY hospitals to receive $9 million from feds
New legislation at the federal level will provide rural hospitals with $9 million over the next five years, helping to relieve at least a little bit of funding uncertainty. The funds come through the extension of two programs that were included in the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018. Both programs expired last October.  The Low-Volume Hospital (LVH) program provides funding to the rural hospitals deemed critical to the community but may not serve a high volume of pat ients. The Medicare-Dependent… (Source: bizjournals.com Health Care:Biotechnology headlines)
Source: bizjournals.com Health Care:Biotechnology headlines - February 17, 2018 Category: Biotechnology Authors: Tracey Drury Source Type: news

Summary of Recent and Proposed Changes to Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage and Reimbursement
This brief summarizes recent and proposed changes to Medicare prescription drug coverage and reimbursement based on the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 and the President's fiscal year 2019 budget. (Source: HSR Information Central)
Source: HSR Information Central - February 16, 2018 Category: International Medicine & Public Health Source Type: news

Inside One Couple ’s Experimental Treatment to Battle Alzheimer’s Disease
JoAnn Wooding is staring intently at the clear liquid dripping from a dark brown IV bag into her husband Peter’s arm. “Please be the drug, please be the drug,” she says. Married for more than 50 years, the Woodings are among the more than 5 million Americans who are facing Alzheimer’s disease, one of the most devastating diagnoses today. But instead of accepting the slow descent into memory loss, confusion and dementia, Peter–who has the disease–could be among the first to successfully stop that decline from happening. Peter, 77, is one of the 2,700 people around the world who are expect...
Source: TIME: Health - February 15, 2018 Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Alice Park Tags: Uncategorized Alzheimer's Disease healthytime Longevity Source Type: news

Doctors Don't Need to Redocument Students' EHR Entries: CMS Doctors Don't Need to Redocument Students' EHR Entries: CMS
Medicare will still require that teaching physicians verify students'documentation but will not ask them to redocument their work.Medscape Medical News (Source: Medscape Medical News Headlines)
Source: Medscape Medical News Headlines - February 15, 2018 Category: Consumer Health News Tags: Family Medicine/Primary Care News Source Type: news

President's Budget Targets Medicare, Medicaid and Food Stamps
by Dena Bunis, AARP, February 13, 2018|Comments: 12. Money balancing on an apple. Gregory Reid/Gallery Stock. The new budget proposal would reduce funding for several programs that are important to older Americans. President Trump unveiled his federal budget proposal Monday, which takes aim at many of the  ... (Source: AARP.org News)
Source: AARP.org News - February 15, 2018 Category: American Health Source Type: news

The Financial Impact of Post-Acute Care in Medicare Advantage
February 22, 2018 2:00-3:00pm ET. (Source: HSR Information Central)
Source: HSR Information Central - February 15, 2018 Category: International Medicine & Public Health Source Type: news

MICI Q1: Payor pressure weighs on radiology managers
Despite the growing economy, reimbursement pressure from payors -- particularly...Read more on AuntMinnie.comRelated Reading: MICI Q4: Political concerns don't roil admins' outlook MICI Q3: Administrator sentiment remains steady MICI Q2: Political concerns cloud radiology outlook MICI Q1: Radiology takes wait-and-see approach to future MICI Q4: Medicare payment outlook remains at rock bottom (Source: AuntMinnie.com Headlines)
Source: AuntMinnie.com Headlines - February 15, 2018 Category: Radiology Source Type: news

Healthcare Spending Accelerating, 19.7% of Economy by 2026 Healthcare Spending Accelerating, 19.7% of Economy by 2026
Currently, the sector makes up 17.9%, according to a new CMS report. Among reasons for the increase are baby boomers enrolling in Medicare and price growth for medical products and services.Medscape Medical News (Source: Medscape Medical News Headlines)
Source: Medscape Medical News Headlines - February 15, 2018 Category: Consumer Health News Tags: Family Medicine/Primary Care News Source Type: news

Judge rules for Missouri Hospital Association in suit over hospital payments
A U.S. District judge has ruled in favor of the Missouri Hospital Association in a case regarding how much hospitals in the state receive in disproportionate share allotments from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid. (Source: bizjournals.com Health Care:Physician Practices headlines)
Source: bizjournals.com Health Care:Physician Practices headlines - February 14, 2018 Category: American Health Authors: Angela Mueller Source Type: news

Judge rules for Missouri Hospital Association in suit over hospital payments
A U.S. District judge has ruled in favor of the Missouri Hospital Association in a case regarding how much hospitals in the state receive in disproportionate share allotments from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid. (Source: bizjournals.com Health Care:Biotechnology headlines)
Source: bizjournals.com Health Care:Biotechnology headlines - February 14, 2018 Category: Biotechnology Authors: Angela Mueller Source Type: news

Omeros stock drops as short-seller takes aim
Omeros' stock has fallen about 19 percent after investment adviser FourWorld Capital Management forecast a sharp drop in revenue after Medicare reimbursement ended for its only drug on the market. (Source: bizjournals.com Health Care:Physician Practices headlines)
Source: bizjournals.com Health Care:Physician Practices headlines - February 14, 2018 Category: American Health Authors: Casey Coombs Source Type: news

Omeros stock drops as short-seller takes aim
Omeros' stock has fallen about 19 percent after investment adviser FourWorld Capital Management forecast a sharp drop in revenue after Medicare reimbursement ended for its only drug on the market. (Source: bizjournals.com Health Care:Biotechnology headlines)
Source: bizjournals.com Health Care:Biotechnology headlines - February 14, 2018 Category: Biotechnology Authors: Casey Coombs Source Type: news

HeartFlow closes $240m Series E
HeartFlow said today it closed a $240 million Series E round of financing, with funds slated to support commercial expansion and studies of its HeartFlow FFRct analysis system. Redwood City, Calif.-based HeartFlow’s FFRct technology works by taking the data from a standard CT scan and applying algorithms that result in a color-coded 3D “map” detailing the changes in flow across coronary lesions. Financing in the round included investments from Wellington Management, Baillie Gifford & Company and existing investors, the company said. “We are delighted to be investing in HeartFlow on beh...
Source: Mass Device - February 14, 2018 Category: Medical Devices Authors: Fink Densford Tags: Business/Financial News Funding Roundup HeartFlow Source Type: news

New York Surgeon Gets 13 Years in Prison for Medicare Fraud New York Surgeon Gets 13 Years in Prison for Medicare Fraud
A federal judge also ordered Syed Imran Ahmed, MD, to pay millions in restitution and fines. The court found he billed more than $85M for procedures he never performed and upped charges with a false code.Medscape Medical News (Source: Medscape Medical News Headlines)
Source: Medscape Medical News Headlines - February 14, 2018 Category: Consumer Health News Tags: General Surgery News Source Type: news

GAO Report Shows Medicare Advantage Plans Could Be a Disadvantage for Seniors with Health Issues; Narrow Networks Continue to Impact Smaller Clinical Laboratories
Tight provider networks have some seniors dropping private plans after losing access to ‘preferred doctors and hospitals’ and experiencing issues with ‘access to care’ Medicare Advantage Plans continue to rise in popularity. That trend has implications for clinical laboratories and anatomic pathology groups because private insurers running Medicare Advantage plans tend to have narrow or […] (Source: Dark Daily)
Source: Dark Daily - February 14, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Jude Tags: dark daily home page Laboratory Pathology Laboratory Testing AHIP America’s Health Insurance Plans anatomic pathology Center for Medicare Advocacy centers for medicare and medicaid services clinical laboratory CMS David Lipschutz JD Source Type: news

UAB creates an Accountable Care Organization for Medicare patients
The UAB Health System has established an Accountable Care Organization to partner with other health care providers in order to improve quality and care for Medicare patients throughout the state. The ACO members are UAB Hospital, the University of Alabama Health Services Foundation, Medical West Hospital, Christ Health Center and Cahaba Health Center. The centers for Medicare and Medicaid Series authorized the ACO to begin serving patients at the beginning of 2018.  The ACOs are groups o f health… (Source: bizjournals.com Health Care News Headlines)
Source: bizjournals.com Health Care News Headlines - February 13, 2018 Category: Health Management Authors: Tyler Patchen Source Type: news

U.S. can sue UnitedHealth in $1 billion Medicare case, judge rules
(Reuters) - A federal judge has ruled the U.S. Justice Department can move forward with a lawsuit claiming UnitedHealth Group Inc wrongly retained more than $1 billion from the government healthcare program Medicare. (Source: Reuters: Health)
Source: Reuters: Health - February 13, 2018 Category: Consumer Health News Tags: healthNews Source Type: news

Hearing on the Opioid Crisis: Removing Barriers to Prevent and Treat Opioid Abuse and Dependence in Medicare
Recording of the House's Committee on Ways and Means hearing from February 6, 2018. (Source: HSR Information Central)
Source: HSR Information Central - February 13, 2018 Category: International Medicine & Public Health Source Type: news

Attention Seniors: An Important Medicare Deadline Is Approaching
Not loving your Medicare Advantage plan? You have until Feb. 14 to ditch it under the annual Medicare Advantage Disenrollment Period, which ends on Valentine’s Day. Note that this isn’t a continuation of open enrollment, the annual period from Oct. 15 through Dec. 7 when you can make any number of changes to your Medicare coverage. Only one move is permitted during the winter disenrollment period: switching from Medicare Advantage to original Medicare, which is Parts A and B. You can also buy a Part D drug plan and a Medigap supplement plan. Unless you have special circumstances, you’ll have to wait until...
Source: TIME: Health - February 12, 2018 Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Elizabeth O'Brien Tags: Health Care Source Type: news

Insurers Signal Medicare Advantage Buyouts Ahead
Anthem, Humana and WellCare Health Plans say they will seek mergers and acquisitions to help grow their Medicare Advantage businesses. (Source: Forbes.com Healthcare News)
Source: Forbes.com Healthcare News - February 12, 2018 Category: Pharmaceuticals Authors: Bruce Japsen, Contributor Tags: NYSE:WCG NYSE:ANTM NYSE:HUM NYSE:AET NYSE:CI Source Type: news

Medicare Data Reveal $564 Million Wasted On Chiropractors And Osteopathic Manipulation
Medicare and Medicaid spend over $560 million per year on services that are little more than quackery: chiropractic and osteopathic manipulative therapy. OMT was what convicted sports doctor Larry Nassar claimed he was doing to the hundreds of female athletes he abused. (Source: Forbes.com Healthcare News)
Source: Forbes.com Healthcare News - February 12, 2018 Category: Pharmaceuticals Authors: Steven Salzberg, Contributor Source Type: news

Don't delay planning for Medicare decision-support rules
Radiologists have received another reprieve from the deadline for using appropriate...Read more on AuntMinnie.comRelated Reading: What radiologists should know about 2018 MIPS changes Coding and billing considerations in interventional radiology How 2018 coding changes will affect radiology practices Are virtual groups an option for radiologists reporting MIPS? 5 things to consider when evaluating your billing vendor (Source: AuntMinnie.com Headlines)
Source: AuntMinnie.com Headlines - February 12, 2018 Category: Radiology Source Type: news

Trump's big promises on drug costs followed by modest steps
Trump has made big promises to reduce prescription drug costs, but his administration is moving toward relatively modest steps such as letting Medicare patients share in manufacturer rebates (Source: ABC News: Health)
Source: ABC News: Health - February 12, 2018 Category: Consumer Health News Tags: Health Source Type: news

Medicare Therapy Caps Repealed by Congress
17 hours ago ... “Millions of vulnerable patients who need occupational, physical and speech- language therapy will now be protected from an arbitrary limit on how much Medicare will pay for needed therapy,” said Nancy LeaMond, AARP's executive vice president and chief advocacy and engagement officer. LeaMond  ... (Source: AARP.org News)
Source: AARP.org News - February 10, 2018 Category: American Health Source Type: news

Medicare Part D 'Donut Hole' Will Close in 2019
Drug companies will pay more to lower some Part D costs. by Dena Bunis, AARP, February 9, 2018|Comments: 0. Prescription pad with two pills on it. Len DeLessio/Getty Images. Medicare Part D beneficiaries who have high prescription drug expenses currently have to pay more once the total cost of their medicines  ... (Source: AARP.org News)
Source: AARP.org News - February 10, 2018 Category: American Health Source Type: news

Congress Boosts Medicare Coverage For Virtual Doctor Visits
Access to telehealth services for seniors covered by Medicare is poised to take off thanks to Congress'approval of a new federal budget expands access to virtual doctor visits provided by private Medicare Advantage plans. (Source: Forbes.com Healthcare News)
Source: Forbes.com Healthcare News - February 10, 2018 Category: Pharmaceuticals Authors: Bruce Japsen, Contributor Tags: NYSE:WCG NYSE:ANTM NYSE:CI Source Type: news

On drug costs, modest steps follow Trump's big promises
President Donald Trump has made big promises to reduce prescription drug costs, but his administration is moving toward relatively modest steps such as letting Medicare patients share in manufacturer rebates (Source: ABC News: Health)
Source: ABC News: Health - February 10, 2018 Category: Consumer Health News Tags: Health Source Type: news

Give AARP's Newest Weekly News Quiz a Try
2 days ago ... What's going on in the news this past week? Take the new AARP News Quiz to find out. Topics include Medicare, veterans and the Chinese New Year. (Source: AARP.org News)
Source: AARP.org News - February 10, 2018 Category: American Health Source Type: news

Lower Drug Prices: New Proposals Carry Lots of Promises
The White House is considering a plan to lower out-of-pocket costs for people in Medicare drug plans, who often pay inflated prices for their drugs. (Source: NYT Health)
Source: NYT Health - February 9, 2018 Category: Consumer Health News Authors: KATIE THOMAS and REED ABELSON Tags: Drugs (Pharmaceuticals) Health Insurance and Managed Care Medicare United States Politics and Government Health and Human Services Department Trump, Donald J Source Type: news

ASTRO commends payment freeze for radiation treatment
The American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) said it commends the U.S....Read more on AuntMinnie.comRelated Reading: ASTRO chair set to testify on Medicare payment reform ASTRO: Short radiation course safe for breast cancer ASTRO: Breast radiation 'less scary' than expected ASTRO awards $275K to researchers ASTRO honors 43 researchers at annual meeting (Source: AuntMinnie.com Headlines)
Source: AuntMinnie.com Headlines - February 9, 2018 Category: Radiology Source Type: news

Trump to propose lowering prescription drug costs under Medicare
Under Trump's proposal ​, seniors covered by Medicare's popular "Part D" prescription benefit would be able to share in the rebates for individual drugs that they purchase at the pharmacy (Source: Health News: CBSNews.com)
Source: Health News: CBSNews.com - February 9, 2018 Category: Consumer Health News Source Type: news

November 8, 2018: Queensbury Oncologist and Spouse to Pay $500,000 for Submitting False Claims to Medicare for the Administration of Unapproved Cancer Drugs
(Source: Office of Criminal Investigations (OCI) Press Releases)
Source: Office of Criminal Investigations (OCI) Press Releases - February 9, 2018 Category: Medical Law Source Type: news

February 8, 2018: Queensbury Oncologist and Spouse to Pay $500,000 for Submitting False Claims to Medicare for the Administration of Unapproved Cancer Drugs
(Source: Office of Criminal Investigations (OCI) Press Releases)
Source: Office of Criminal Investigations (OCI) Press Releases - February 9, 2018 Category: Medical Law Source Type: news

Trump Approves Budget Deal, Reduces Medicare Fee Cuts Trump Approves Budget Deal, Reduces Medicare Fee Cuts
The package also extends many health programs that had expired, repeals the Independent Payment Advisory Board, and adds $6 billion to address the opioid epidemic.Medscape Medical News (Source: Medscape Medical News Headlines)
Source: Medscape Medical News Headlines - February 9, 2018 Category: Consumer Health News Tags: Family Medicine/Primary Care News Alert Source Type: news

Trump Signs Budget Deal, Reduces Medicare Fee Cuts Trump Signs Budget Deal, Reduces Medicare Fee Cuts
The package also extends many health programs that had expired, repeals the Independent Payment Advisory Board, and adds $6 billion to address the opioid epidemic.Medscape Medical News (Source: Medscape Medical News Headlines)
Source: Medscape Medical News Headlines - February 9, 2018 Category: Consumer Health News Tags: Family Medicine/Primary Care News Alert Source Type: news

Trump Signs Budget Deal, Cuts Medicare Fee in 2019 Trump Signs Budget Deal, Cuts Medicare Fee in 2019
The package also extends many health programs that had expired, repeals the Independent Payment Advisory Board, and adds $6 billion to address the opioid epidemic.Medscape Medical News (Source: Medscape Medical News Headlines)
Source: Medscape Medical News Headlines - February 9, 2018 Category: Consumer Health News Tags: Family Medicine/Primary Care News Alert Source Type: news

Medicare Announces New ID Card Mailing Schedule
Five mid-Atlantic states, D.C. get fraud-fighting replacements by June. by Dena Bunis, AARP, February 7, 2018|Comments: 0. Medicare Shows Off New Card Design. Centers for Medicare& Medicaid Services via AP. The new cards have an 11-character, randomly assigned number that has no connection to a beneficiary's  ... (Source: AARP.org News)
Source: AARP.org News - February 9, 2018 Category: American Health Source Type: news

Trump proposes reduction of drug costs under Medicare
Trump making first proposal to cut cost of prescription drugs for Medicare recipients (Source: ABC News: Health)
Source: ABC News: Health - February 9, 2018 Category: Consumer Health News Tags: Health Source Type: news