Health Reform

A Glitch in Health Care Reform

New York Times Editorial, August 26, 2012 Confusing language in the health care reform law has raised the possibility that millions of Americans living on modest incomes may be unable to afford their employers’ family policies and yet fail to qualify for government subsidies to buy their own insurance. This is a bizarre development that undercuts the basic goal of health care reform - to expand the number of insured people and make their coverage affordable. The people left in the lurch would be those who had lower incomes but were not poor enough to qualify for Medicaid. ... A

Private hospitals begin to nurse big ambitions

Medical profession engaged in healthy debate over nature of care. Yang Wanli, China Daily, August 24, 2012 While job-hopping is quite common, few medical professionals make the switch from a public hospital to a private one. A position in a public hospital has traditionally been regarded as an "iron bowl", offering long-term employment. Yang Jie is one of the exceptions. While working in a public hospital in the 1990s she was chosen by the Beijing Health Bureau to go to Singapore to study nursing. After two years in Singapore she decided to work at a private hospital when she returned to Beijing. ... Private

Hold the Date! National Strategy Conference January 11-13, Chicago, IL

Labor for Single-Payer, August 20, 2012 The Steering Committee of the Labor Campaign for Single Payer has called for the convening of a National Strategy Conference January 11-13, 2013. The AFL-CIO Executive Council recently issued a statement on Building on the Affordable Care Act. It challenged unionists to continue the fight for healthcare for all. “America’s union movement will not take our eyes off the prize,” the statement reads. “We will keep moving forward until the right to a single high standard of care is a reality for everyone in America.” ... Hold

NHS hospital partnership decision delayed

Sarah Neville & Kiran Stacey, Financial Times, August 15, 2012

An eagerly awaited decision on whether an NHS hospital can seek a tie-up with a private sector partner, potentially reviving charges that the coalition is seeking to “privatise” the NHS, has been delayed.

The board of George Eliot Hospital in Nuneaton, Warwickshire, decided at the end of May to seek permission from the Department of Health to tender for a strategic partner in an attempt to secure its future.

It is among 21 hospitals the department has identified as having financial problems.

Wisconsin's Greater West Central Area Labor Council Endorses HR.676

Kay Tillow, All Unions Committee For Single Payer Health Care, August 13, 2012

Qatar rolls out universal healthcare plan

Jenifer Fenton, Financial Times, August 13, 2012

Doha - When Qatar opened its first hospital in 1957, few could have imagined the surging demand that would be placed on the country’s fledgling healthcare system in the coming decades.

More than half a century later, Qatar is now rolling out an even more ambitious first: a scheme to introduce a universal healthcare system, driven by private insurance providers, by 2014.

The new national strategy mandates insurance coverage as compulsory for all Qatari citizens, expatriates and even tourists visiting the country. Insurance plans will be valid at any service provider in Qatar, including the private facilities that represent more than 65 per cent of all the country’s healthcare providers.

Iraq struggles to revive health sector

Lubna Naji, Financial Times, August 8, 2012

Dr Zaid Al Naddaf, the manager of a primary healthcare centre in Iraq’s eastern Wasit Province, is on the front lines of the country’s efforts to rebuild its health system. But his sentiment towards the job reflects the frustration and disillusionment of many young Iraqi healthcare professionals.

“I want to stay here and serve my country,” he says. “But when I live in a country where I’m exposed and not protected, then it would be better for me and my family to leave.”

Building On The Affordable Care Act

AFL-CIO, August 1, 2012 The US Supreme Court’s decision upholding the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is only the beginning of the next phase of health care reform. The path forward should be clear: First, we must move full speed ahead to implement the ACA; second, we must firmly reject efforts to undo the progress that already has been made with the ACA, Medicaid and Medicare; and third, we must build upon the ACA, Medicaid and Medicare to achieve our goal of quality health care for all. ... Building

China increases budget for rural healthcare spending

Canada Newswire, August 1, 2012 Toronto - China Health Labs & Diagnostics Ltd. ("China Health" or the "Company") is well positioned for growth as China's central government continues to increase its investment and annual budget for healthcare with an emphasis on moving towards universal healthcare and improving rural healthcare. In 2010, a total of 1,998 billion yuan ($320 billion dollars) was spent on healthcare in China. In 2011, it is estimated that China spent 2,250 billion yuan ($360 billion dollars) on healthcare, being healthcare expenditure per capita of 1,643 yuan ($263 dollars). ... China

China's Expanding Health Care Industry

Miles Indest, The Health Care Law Firm, July 30, 2012

10 Considerations for Hospitals in the Aftermath of Supreme Court's PPACA Decision

Bob Spoerl, Becker’s Hospital Review, July 27, 2012 The Supreme Court made a historic decision on June 28 to uphold the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The Court let the individual mandate stand, via Congress' power to tax, but limited lawmakers' ability to withhold funding from states that choose to opt-out of Medicaid expansion.  Healthcare leaders' reactions were mixed. Some leaders embraced healthcare reform's constitutional affirmation; President and CEO of the American Hospital Association Rich Umbdenstock said in a statement the Court's decision to uphold the law provides hospitals ... 10

Robin Hood Answers Call For AIDS Funding

National Nurses United, July 25, 2012 Attendance reflected the concern – worldwide – and when protesters spilled out of the Washington Convention Center at Mount Vernon Square at noon yesterday the mood was one of strong focus and commitment. It was mid-week through the 19th International AIDS Conference and marchers hit the streets sounding this theme: We Can End AIDS. 

Joining a field of activists and supporters – among them many living with AIDS/HIV+ -  thousands gathered at five separate locations in downtown DC and headed toward Lafayette Park, across from the White House. ... Robin

Thousands Join Call for Robin Hood Tax in Washington March to End AIDS

National Nurses United, July 25, 2012

Thousands of people marched through Washington DC Tuesday in a call for stronger action, once and for all, that could bring an end to the AIDS pandemic. One thing most marchers agreed on was a clear way to pay for the fight against AIDS by taxing Wall Street and other financial institutions with a Robin Hood tax on speculation and trades.

Many of the marchers were in the colorful delegation, attired in Robin Hood hats, and carrying signs reading “It’s Not a Tax on the People, It’s a Tax to End HIV/AIDS”, led by members of Health GAP, National Nurses United, National People’s Action, and Voices of Community Activists and Leaders (Vocal-NY).

What does the Supreme Court’s health care decision mean for federal-state relations?

Chelsea Conaboy, Boston Globe, July 23, 2012 In the weeks since the Supreme Court issued a decision on the Affordable Care Act, some local health law experts have taken a longer look at the implications. And they’re concerned about just how far-reaching the decision could be. The complicated, multi-part decision upheld most of the law, including a requirement that most Americans have health insurance or pay a penalty. But, it also said that the federal government could not require states to expand Medicaid to cover more of the poor or risk losing all federal funding for the health program. ... What

First-class medical care for the wealthy

First-class medical care is available in China, not only to expats, but also to those with deep pockets in the major cities. Liu Zhihua, China Daily, July 18, 2012 More well-off Chinese are opting for expensive private hospital care, rather than waiting their turn at public hospitals. Ren Ni, director of an international exhibition company, had her laser eye surgery recently at a private eye clinic of Singapore Medical Group and was totally satisfied with the excellent service. "I am very busy, and cannot afford the long waiting time at public hospitals," Ren says. "At a private healthcare agency, I can decide when to receive the treatment to minimize disruption at work." ... First-class

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