Health Reform

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Mass-Care’s 14th Annual Single Payer Gala: In Memory of Ben Gill

Saturday, April 21, 2012 from 1 PM to 4 PM
Ryles Jazz Club, 212 Hampshire Street, Inman Square, Cambridge
$35 standard admission, $10 for students - please donate what you can!


Join Mass-Care and the Universal Health Care Education Fund on April 21 for ... Mass-Care

5 Elements Private Equity Firms Consider for Potential Healthcare Transactions

Kathleen Roney, Becker’s Hospital Review, April 17, 2012 The healthcare industry has attracted a great deal of interest from private equity firms over the last few years. Many healthcare professionals believe the interest will continue, if not increase, as healthcare reform and other changes sweep US healthcare. Private equity firms can be valuable assets for hospitals and health systems looking for assistance with capital or the strength of a partner. Private equity traditionally has large cash flows allowing for capital expenditures. Additionally, they generally know how to run organizations successfully. ... 5

Six Sigma, 10 Years on: Was "the Promise" Realized?

Ian R. Lazarus, Becker’s Hospital Review, April 6, 2012 In October 2001, an article appearing in Managed Healthcare Executive announced the arrival of Six Sigma methodologies in the healthcare sector. While manufacturing industries had verified significant gains from Six Sigma, service industries like healthcare were only beginning to understand what Six Sigma was all about. Moreover, the healthcare industry had grown weary from a series of performance improvement methods that were tantamount to the flavor of the month. ... Six

Why does health care cost so much?

Gary Kowalski, GateHouse News Service, March 29, 2012

Sudbury - Like many Americans, I’m satisfied with my health insurance. As a retired government employee, my wife is covered with CIGNA and our premiums are mostly paid by the taxpayers. But news that CIGNA’s top executive David Cordani enjoyed a pay increase of 25 percent last year, to $18.9 million annually, reminded me why health care reform remains an unresolved challenge for our country.

Massachusetts Health Care 5-Year Lobbying Topped $51M

Associated Press, March 29, 2012

Hospitals, insurers, doctors and unions are spending tens of millions of dollars trying to make sure their voices are heard on Beacon Hill as Massachusetts lawmakers weigh sweeping changes to the way the state pays for health coverage.

In 2011 alone, the health care industry, one of the largest economic sectors in the state, doled out more than $11.6 million on lobbying.

And during the five years since the state passed its landmark health care overhaul, from 2007 to 2011, the total amount spent on lobbying by the industry topped $51.6 million, according to a review of state records by The Associated Press.

Health-Care Law to Be Upheld, De La Torre Says - video

Bloomberg, March 28, 2012 Ralph de la Torre, chairman and chief executive officer at Steward Health Care System LLC, talks about the outlook for the Obama administration's health-care overhaul. He speaks with Carol Massar on Bloomberg Television's "Taking Stock." ... Health-Care

Conservatives and Liberals Agree: Medicare for All Would Be Constitutional

Miles Mogulescu, Huffington Post, April 3, 2012 Conservatives and liberals may disagree about the constitutionality of the individual mandate requiring all uninsured Americans to buy health insurance from private companies or pay a penalty to the IRS. But there is no debate about whether single-payer Medicare For All would be constitutional. No one - not even the most hard core, right-wing libertarians - disputes that the federal government has the constitutional authority to tax all Americans to pay for Medicare-style health insurance for all, as it pays for Medicare for everyone over 65. ... Conservatives

In Controversial Decision, Supreme Court Replaces Annual Physicals with Strip Searches

Major Expansion of Police Officers’ Role. Andy Borowitz, The Borowitz Report, April 3, 2012 Washington – In a stunning decision on the future of healthcare in America, the Supreme Court decided today that annual physicals were unconstitutional and should be replaced by random strip searches conducted by the nation’s police. The decision, which appeared to expand the role of the police to include such duties as performing breast and prostate exams, took many in both the healthcare and law enforcement communities by surprise. ... In

Lost Generation

Entire classes of nursing graduates are unable to find work simply because the hospital industry believes investing in new grads is bad for its bottom line. What troubles lie ahead, then, for the future of our profession?
 Heather Boerner, National Nurse, January-February 2012 In the three months since Jacqueline Schubert graduated with a BSN, she’s sent hundreds of résumés, stayed in contact with her preceptor, asked her boyfriend, an ER doctor, to see if there were any openings for new grads at his hospital, and walked the halls of every medical practice in the south Florida area, asking about work and knocking on doors. ... Lost

Court of Public Health

The Supreme Court will debate the legality of healthcare laws this spring, while all indicators show the country needs single-payer. RoseAnn DeMoro, Executive Director, National Nurses United, National Nurse, January-February 2012 With the approaching Supreme Court showdown on President Obama’s 2010 healthcare law (the Affordable Care Act [ACA], modeled, of course, on Mitt Romney’s law in Massachusetts), the US healthcare system remains a dysfunctional mess, as nurses bear witness to every day. ... Court

Whatever the Supreme Court Decides on Healthcare, Nurses See the Real Crisis Continuing

Karen Higgins, RN, AlterNet, March 28, 2012 As the Supreme Court justices pass judgment on the law even the President now calls Obamacare, the sad fact is that that health care will remain beyond the reach of millions of Americans no matter how the court rules. In contrast, nearly half the justices who will pass judgment on the law are beyond the age where they have to worry about their access to care. Four of the nine judges already qualify for guaranteed healthcare, two more will within three years when they reach age 65. ... Whatever

The Supreme Court, Health Care and the Current Political Moment

Nick Unger, Portside, March 30, 2012 Did you see the article on the Internet that the Supreme Court could decide to throw out the ACA and instead impose single-payer? It said it was "Supreme Jury Nullification." Somebody else wrote they heard that if the Court declares the ACA unconstitutional then Congress gets to have an up or down vote on Medicare For All. Then there were all the comments saying this was all a fantasy and absolutely not true. I made this up, but something rather like it really is going on. Many are seeing the Supreme Court hearings as Single Payer versus ACA. ... The

Supreme Court Judges Have Access to Guaranteed Care, Shouldn’t You?

Rose Ann DeMoro, Common Dreams, March 30, 2012 Justices Antonin Scalia, Anthony Kennedy, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and Stephen Breyer did not have much in common during the three days of debate on the 2010 healthcare law before the Supreme Court March 26-28. But they did share one essential characteristic. All four will never have to worry about guaranteed access to healthcare. They won’t have to worry about being bankrupted by medical bills, about being denied needed treatment their doctor recommended because some insurance bean counter deemed it ‘experimental’ or ‘not medically necessary.’ ... Supreme

The Supreme Court and the National Conversation on Health Care Reform

Uwe E. Reinhardt, New York Times, March 30, 2012 Once again America is having one of its “national conversations” on health care reform. This time the buzz is over arguments before the Supreme Court on the constitutionality of certain provisions in the Affordable Care Act. The justices’ rulings will be landmark decisions, because they will indirectly go much beyond the act itself to our entire system of governance. The two major substantive decisions the Supreme Court has to make are ... The

Judges Not Debating Their Own Health Care

National Nurses United, March 28, 2012 With nearly half the Supreme Court justices who will pass judgment on the 2010 healthcare law beyond the age where they have to worry about their access to care, the nation’s leading voice of nurses said today that all Americans should have the same level of security about their health.
 
That guarantee could be achieved by extending Medicare, for which four of the nine judges already qualify, to everyone, without raising constitutional questions posed by the individual mandate that forces everyone without coverage to buy private, commercial health insurance, noted the 170,000-member National Nurses United in a statement today. ... Judges

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