Category: Issue Alert

Highlights from AHIP’s Medicare Conference, Day 1

The first day of AHIP’s Medicare Conference kicked off Monday with a presentation from Sean Cavanaugh, deputy administrator and director of the Center for Medicare at CMS. During his opening session, he highlighted great news happening in Medicare Advantage and Medicare Part D. Continue reading

Posted in: Issue Alert

The dangers of AWP laws in 1-2-3

Health plans have been creating provider networks that deliver greater efficiency and higher quality. Three separate studies show that “any willing provider” (AWP) laws will undermine those efforts. 1. In the first report, Paul Ginsburg, the Norman Topping Chair in Medicine and Public Policy at the University of Southern California’s Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics, concludes that AWP laws can increase health care costs and negatively affect care quality. AWP laws, which allow any doctor or hospital to [...]

Posted in: Health Care Costs, Issue Alert, Uncategorized

Unaffordable lifesaving drugs – the list is growing

The FDA is on track to approve a record number of high-priced specialty drugs in 2014, according to a new report from Express Scripts. Continue reading

Posted in: Issue Alert

What really happens when hospitals consolidate

Provider consolidation is a continuing source of debate in health care. But the facts are clear: Hospital mergers can drive up health care costs for consumers. Continue reading

Posted in: Health Care Costs, Issue Alert

Leveraging the power of health IT

This week marks nine years of National Health IT Week, and health plans have been longtime supporters of health IT. Continue reading

Posted in: Issue Alert

Old drug, higher price, no excuse

That headline rings all too true. This week MedPage Today and The Street reported on drug companies that took old drugs and made no changes … except for their price tags, which increased dramatically. Continue reading

Posted in: Issue Alert

Big hospital systems mean higher prices

With news of Advocate Health Care and NorthShore University HealthSystem forming the largest system in Illinois, it’s time to revisit the serious consequences of anticompetitive hospital consolidation: Research shows bigger hospital systems can lead to higher prices, not necessarily better health care. Continue reading

Posted in: Health Care Costs, Issue Alert

Why Drug Prices Never Come Down in One Quote

Here is a Gilead executive attempting to justify the astronomical price of its hepatitis C treatment Sovaldi to Bloomberg: “We didn’t base it on our R&D costs, and we didn’t base it on our acquisition costs. The most basic answer we give is the regimen cost was the same as the old regimen cost.” Continue reading

Posted in: Health Care Costs, Issue Alert

Roundtable round-up: Protecting Medicare Advantage

The Coalition for Medicare Choices recently held 10 roundtable discussions with members of Congress who have previously worked to protect Medicare Advantage. Here are some highlights of those important discussions that focused on the continued need to protect seniors from harmful cuts to the program. Continue reading

Posted in: Issue Alert

The serious consequences of hospital consolidation

Everyone agrees on the need to lower health care costs and improve the quality of care delivered. And as Martin Gaynor, director of the FTC’s Bureau of Economics, said in a recent interview with Politico Pro, the industry can reach those goals without hospital consolidation. Continue reading

Posted in: Issue Alert