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Archive for January, 2007




HEALTH INSURANCE: Time To Expose Health Care Costs


January 31st, 2007

In today’s Washington Post, Robert Samuelson writes: “For decades, Americans have treated health care as if it exists in a separate economic and political world: When people need care, they should get it; costs should remain out of sight. About 60 percent of Americans receive insurance through their employers; to most workers, the full costs […]

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POLICY: NYC Mayor At National Health Policy Conference


January 30th, 2007

New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg is scheduled to make a major policy announcement at the 2007 National Health Policy Conference cosponsored by Health Affairs and AcademyHealth at the Capitol Hilton in Washington, D.C. Bloomberg will speak at the Feb. 12 luncheon keynote. Pre-registration deadline for the Feb. 12-13 event is Monday, Feb. 5. Also […]

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HEART DISEASE: Progress And Promise Of “Personalized Medicine”


January 29th, 2007

By any measure, heart disease, once manifest by sudden death, has largely joined the ranks of chronic diseases in developed countries that can be managed by drugs and behavior, as several articles in the new January-February issue of Health Affairs devoted to Cardiovascular Disease & Society note. And of all diseases that have been long-studied […]

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IT: Notes From A Parallel Universe


January 26th, 2007

Many reports on health information technology in the past few years tell a tale of a dream deferred — standard-setting deadlines blown, adoption targets undershot, groundswells of demand dematerializing. But in the alternate world of large, integrated health plans, where the better angels of our troubled system’s nature may be said to reside, some of […]

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HEALTH REFORM: 4 Reasons Why A Provider Tax Could Work For States


January 25th, 2007

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has proposed a system for achieving near-universal health coverage in California. One provision that is likely to be controversial is the use of a provider tax to help fund the increased state expenditures that would be required. There are at least four reasons why a provider tax may be a desirable way […]

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HEALTH REFORM: Making The Most Of The Bush Plan


January 25th, 2007

Is 2007 the “Year of the Possible?” Health care consultant Robert Laszewski cites the strong interest in health care reform and coverage expansion in the new Democratic-controlled Congress; state coverage initiatives that literally span the country from Massachusetts to California; and “odd couple” partnerships that have come together on new coverage initiatives. Examples of the […]

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BLOG: Health Wonk Review #24


January 25th, 2007

It’s Health Wonk Review week! Oh, and the State of the Union was delivered, too. Even though the deadline for entries to this edition of the best of health policy blogging was 9 am the morning after, many bloggers were already debating the president’s foray into health reform. The President’s plan. Robert Laszewski on the new […]

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MEDICARE: Not Just An Advantage, But A Stacked Deck


January 24th, 2007

Democrats prioritized price negotiations on prescription drugs, but in principle, payments to private plans are an equally salient target on the new majority’s Medicare agenda. The Republicans’ Medicare Modernization Act pays Medicare Advantage (MA) plans from about 10 to nearly 20 percent more per beneficiary than the traditional fee-for-service program spends on them. The overpayments […]

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GLOBAL HEALTH: Where Is The Money To Help Poor Countries With Heart Disease?


January 22nd, 2007

At the January 19 briefing for the new issue of Health Affairs on cardiovascular disease (CVD), David McAlary from the Voice of America asked the panelists whether rich countries are committing any significant resources to deal with noncommunicable diseases (NCDs), including CVD, in poor countries. Both Tom Gaziano, author of an article on CVD in […]

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BLOG: Jan 24 Deadline For Health Wonk Review


January 22nd, 2007

The Health Affairs blog is hosting the Health Wonk Review this week. The deadline for entries is Wednesday, Jan. 24 at 9 am. Please e-mail me your best health policy-oriented blog post of the past two weeks along with the following.

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PHYSICIANS AND HOSPITALS: Can They Cooperate To Control Costs?


January 19th, 2007

Elliott Fisher and colleagues in their provocative paper published online December 5 validated an approach to quantifying the clinical and economic performance of physician communities clustered statistically around hospitals. Fisher describes the so-called extended hospital medical staff as “hospital-associated multispecialty group practices” or “virtual organizations.” While some physician markets do indeed function as “communities,” with […]

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Last Chance for Free Access to 25 Most-Read Articles


January 19th, 2007

Today’s the last day for free access to the 25 most-read Health Affairs articles of 2006. After today you need a subscription. Happy reading!

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HEART DISEASE: Briefing Tomorrow and New Issue


January 18th, 2007

Readers are welcome to join us tomorrow, Friday, January 19, at a National Press Club briefing on “Heart Disease Prevention and Treatment: What Have We Learned, and Where Do We Go from Here?” Speakers, including Harvard economist David Cutler and the National Institutes of Health’s Elizabeth Nabel, will focus on progress in preventing cardiovascular disease, […]

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HEALTH REFORM: Dueling Approaches To Expanding Coverage


January 17th, 2007

The calendar and the newly cold weather say January, but the efflorescence of health care reform proposals indicate that it is springtime in Washington. As the new Congress gears up to tackle specific parts of the government’s health care portfolio — for instance, Medicare Part D and reauthorization of SCHIP — newly invigorated proposals to […]

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POLITICS: Washington Post on Health Affairs and Health Reform


January 16th, 2007

In this Sunday’s Washington Post, business columnist Steven Pearlstein puts health reform high on the political agenda and touts Health Affairs as the “indispensable journal” for all those who want to follow and/or participate in the debate: “With Democrats taking charge on Capitol Hill, health-care reform is back on the front burner of public policy […]

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GLOBAL HEALTH: President’s Plan for AIDS Relief


January 11th, 2007

At a strategic moment when funding remains in limbo as unfinished business from the last Congress, the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) has significant successes to report, says recently appointed Global AIDS Coordinator Mark Dybul, M.D. Ambassador Dybul made his remarks at a January 4 Global Health Council policy forum.

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BLOG: New Health Wonk Review


January 11th, 2007

After a holiday break, the latest edition of the Health Wonk Review is up. This roundup of new health policy blog posts is hosted this time by Health Care Renewal. Topics range from health insurance to quality, health IT, pharma/biotech, and management issues.

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SPENDING: Health Spending Grows At Slowest Pace Since 1999


January 9th, 2007

A dramatic decline in the growth of prescription drug spending helped temper U.S. health spending growth again in 2005 to the slowest rate since 1999, according to the annual report from economists in the Office of the Actuary, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, published in the January/February 2007 Health Affairs, released today.

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POLITICS: From Congress to California: The New Political Imperative to Cover Kids


January 8th, 2007

Since 2000, the federal budget surplus of that year evaporated and before long was replaced by the three largest annual deficits in U.S. history in 2003 ($378 million), 2004 ($413 billion), and 2005 ($318 billion). On 7 January 2007, the total national public debt amounted to $8.7 trillion, or $28,820 for every person in the […]

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25 Most-Read Papers From 2006


January 4th, 2007

To celebrate the start of Health Affairs’ 25th anniversary year, we are offering 2 weeks free access to the 25 most-read papers published in 2006. Overall, Health Affairs’ Web readership jumped to 12 million pageviews in 2006.

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