“The House Ways and Means Committee voted Wednesday to repeal the healthcare law’s controversial CLASS program, clearing the way for a floor vote next month. Only one committee Democrat — Rep. Ron Kind (D-Wis.) — broke party lines to vote in favor of repeal. Three Democrats voted for repeal when the Energy and Commerce Committee passed the CLASS repeal bill in November.”Details
“Programs designed to cut Medicare spending and improve the quality of healthcare have mostly failed, according to the Congressional Budget Office.
The findings are a blow to existing Medicare projects as well as a key goal of the healthcare reform law.”
“Unfortunately, Obamacare threatens to bring American innovation to a screeching halt. To fund their trillion-dollar health care plan, Democrats socked some of their favorite villains — insurers, drug companies and medical device firms — with onerous new taxes.
The impact of these new taxes on health care innovation will be nothing short of disastrous. They will deprive firms of money that they otherwise might spend on research and development.”
“Some of the carriers are leaving because of onerous state regulations, others are victims of a faltering economy, but costly new federal rules and regulations and the many more that are to come as a result of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) are accelerating the exodus… But the Obama administration may be able to achieve liberals’ goal in a different way by suffocating private plans under a mountain of regulation and choking them with impossible cost tests.”Details
“Physicians are tired of government meddling, as if we do not know how to care for patients. We love our profession and love to see and help patients get well. We do not love the exploding paperwork burden and the constant intrusion of the government inserting its will between our patients and us.”Details
“Doctors are catching on fast to the essential deficiencies of ObamaCare, but so are America’s patients. The concern of doctors is reflected among the American people: Support for the law has sunk to 29% in the latest Associated Press poll.
Think of ObamaCare as a heavy horse-drawn cart loaded with all of America’s patients and best technologies. As the cart gets heavier and heavier, does it make sense that we don’t add more horses but instead feed the ones we have less and less while expecting them to pull the additional weight?”
“That is, states must now accept a comprehensive reorganization of Medicaid or forfeit all federal Medicaid funding—even though the spending power is circumscribed to preserve a distinction between what is local and what is national. If Congress is allowed to attach conditions to spending that the states cannot refuse in order to achieve an objective it could not outright mandate, the local/national distinction that is so central to federalism will be erased.”Details
“Twenty-six states on Tuesday asked the Supreme Court to overturn the health care reform law’s mandatory state expansion of the Medicaid program, a sleeper issue in the health care reform lawsuit that could determine how much leverage the federal government has with the states on any issue.
The states, led by Florida, argue that the federal government can’t force them to expand the Medicaid program, which has operated as a partnership between the feds and the states, as part of the 2010 health reform law. They argue that the Medicaid expansion is possibly more coercive than the law’s individual mandate.”
“A broad coalition of patient advocates Wednesday asked the Obama administration to slow down its implementation of a key regulation under the healthcare law. A group of 75 patient organizations asked the Health and Human Services Department to allow more time for public comment on its proposal for defining ‘essential health benefits.’ The healthcare law directs HHS to define a package of essential benefits that all insurance plans will have to cover beginning in 2014.”Details
“Today, the Department of Health and Human Services announced that, ‘Trustmark Life Insurance Company has proposed unreasonable health insurance premium increases in five states—Alabama, Arizona, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Wyoming. The excessive rate hikes would affect nearly 10,000 residents across these five states.’… This rate increase action by HHS is just political grandstanding as the Obama administration tries to sell a still unpopular law.
But it is dangerous grandstanding.”