While much of the stock market sprints ahead powered by economic gains and investor confidence, the health care sector is limping behind.
Nurses, staff go on strike at Ohio hospital
TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — Nurses and technicians and support staff at an Ohio hospital are on strike after an agreement was not reached with management on issues including overtime policies and health...
Polis signs Colorado hospital transparency bill into law
DENVER (AP) — Colorado hospitals will have to report annual spending under a transparency law signed Thursday by Gov. Jared Polis.
The bipartisan effort is part of Polis' goal to reduce...
DENVER (AP) — The Latest on a new Colorado hospital transparency law (all times local):
A new Colorado law requires hospitals to report their annual operating costs to the...
DENVER (AP) — Colorado's Senate has tentatively endorsed legislation requiring hospitals to disclose many of their expenditures to help lower health care costs.
Georgia Gov. Kemp’s Medicaid waiver proposal passes Senate
ATLANTA (AP) — A bill authorizing Gov. Brian Kemp to pursue Medicaid waivers passed the state Senate on Tuesday amid criticism from Democrats that Republicans rushed to approve the governor's...
House Republicans to push health care transparency bills
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — House Republican leaders say they are working on a handful of bills to make health care costs more transparent for consumers.
Florida governor wants to import drugs from Canada
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Florida's governor on Wednesday proposed bringing cheaper, Canadian prescription drugs to Florida as a way to cut health care costs.
Government headed for close to half of nation’s health tab
WASHINGTON (AP) — Even without a history-making health care remake to deliver "Medicare-for-all," government at all levels will be paying nearly half the nation's health care tab in less than 10...
Governor issues executive order to limit health care costs
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo has signed an executive order aimed at curbing health care costs.
The Providence Journal reports the order issued Wednesday seeks to keep health care cost growth below 3.2 percent annually through 2022.
Colorado advances bill to import cheaper prescription drugs
DENVER (AP) — Colorado on Thursday joined a growing number of states that want to cut certain prescription drug prices by importing licensed drugs from Canada.
The idea is central to Democratic Gov. Jared Polis' campaign to rein in health care costs for Coloradans, many of whom, especially in sparsely populated rural and mountain regions, pay some of the nation's highest insurance premiums.
Colorado considers bill to import cheaper prescription drugs
DENVER (AP) — Colorado lawmakers are considering creating a program to reduce the prices of certain prescription drugs by importing them from Canada.
The Senate Health & Human Services Committee takes up a Democrat-sponsored bill on the subject Thursday.
Maine lawmakers begin hearing from new governor’s nominees
AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — Lawmakers are hearing this week from the nominees chosen by the new Democratic governor to lead Maine agencies and roll out her plans to tackle the opioid crisis, climate change and health care costs.
Gov. Janet Mills' nominees to lead the state's financial, transportation, economic and community development, and marine resources agencies will appear in public hearings Tuesday.
Garver wellness program saves on health care costs
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Executives at Garver say its wellness program, recently praised by the Centers for Disease Control, helps the North Little Rock engineering firm save on health care costs and is a boon to the retention, recruitment and productivity of its employees.
Colorado’s Polis creates office to reduce health care costs
DENVER (AP) — Colorado Gov. Jared Polis has signed an executive order creating an office to coordinate his administration's efforts to reduce health care costs.
Polis signed the order Wednesday.
Lt. Gov. Dianne Primavera heads the new Office of Saving People Money on Health Care.
Democrats in charge as Colorado Legislature convenes
DENVER (AP) — Democrats gaveled in their new Colorado legislative majority Friday, vowing to work for citizens not sharing in the state's growing economy by seeking to lower health care costs, enact paid family leave and protect air quality in this oil and gas-producing state.
US urges doctors to write more Rx for overdose antidote
The U.S. government told doctors Wednesday to consider prescribing medications that reverse overdoses to many more patients who take opioid painkillers in a move that could add more than $1 billion in health care costs.
Assistant Secretary for Health Brett Giroir, a doctor appointed by President Donald Trump, announced the guidance, saying it's important for doctors to discuss overdose dangers with patients.
- Greenwich TimeSarah Darer Littman Health care costs stifle business creationMay 21, 2019
- The DayGoing after the generics GoliathMay 17, 2019
- Columbus Telegram5 ideas to save money on health careMay 17, 2019
- The Times-TribuneLetters To The Editor 5/16/2019May 16, 2019
- The Daily JournalHow much does health care cost you?May 6, 2019
Pennsylvania urged to crack down on drug benefit managers
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Pennsylvania's independently elected fiscal watchdog is urging state lawmakers to rein in pharmacy benefit managers, saying the companies are allowed to operate in secrecy in ways that let them profit while driving up health care costs.
Auditor General Eugene DePasquale released an 18-page report Tuesday saying many other states have taken action to force more transparency on pharmacy benefit managers.
Cancer survivors taking sides in Wisconsin governor’s race
MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A two-time cancer survivor and state lawmaker on Thursday accused Democratic gubernatorial candidate Tony Evers of lying when he blames Republican Gov. Scott Walker for rising health care costs, the latest salvo in a battle over who would best look out for people with pre-existing conditions.
Transport, health care top issues for Wisconsin’s disabled
SUPERIOR, Wis. (AP) — Transportation and health care costs are top concerns for disabled Wisconsin residents as the November election approaches, according to advocates for the disabled.
Agency: Nurse ratios could increase health costs nearly $1B
BOSTON (AP) — A November ballot question that would mandate strict nurse-to-patient ratios in Massachusetts hospitals would conservatively add between $676 million and $949 million in annual health care costs, according to an analysis released Wednesday by an independent state agency that was immediately disputed by a union representing nurses.
Shaheen, Hassan introduce bills to lower health care costs
CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — New Hampshire's Democratic U.S. senators are introducing separate but related legislation aimed at lowering health care costs.
Sen. Jeanne Shaheen's bill would cap the amount that hospitals could charge uninsured patients or patients with individual market coverage who receive treatment outside their provider network.
Teachers, state workers will see stable health care premiums
ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia teachers and state employees next year won't see the types of rising health care costs seen in many industries in recent years — at least not in 2019.
The Georgia Department of Community Health recently got approval from its board to keep premiums flat for the upcoming year for teachers and state employees.
DURHAM, N.C. (AP) — The Latest on Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina announcing it's seeking to lower rates for next year's Affordable Care Act policies by 4.1 percent on average. (all times local):
The top executive at North Carolina's largest health insurer is crediting newly negotiated deals with doctors and hospitals for helping drive down the cost of the subsidized "Obamacare" policies it sells.
MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — Vermont officials plan to evaluate the state's prison health care system in order to save money.
Vermont Public Radio reports the Joint Fiscal Office opted to study the system following a 2017 study by the Pew Charitable Trusts that found that Vermont had the second highest per-inmate prison health care costs in the country. The state spent $13,737 per inmate in 2015.
BOSTON (AP) — A state watchdog group says a proposed merger between two major Massachusetts hospital systems could drive up health care costs in the state more than $250 million per year.
The Health Policy Commission's report released Wednesday says a merger of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and the Lahey Health System could mean $191 million more per year for inpatient, outpatient, and primary care services and almost $60 million more per year for specialty physician services.
- Globe NewswireNational Business Group on Health Applauds Efforts to Protect Patients from “Surprise Billing”May 13, 2019
- Business WireBenefit Administrative Systems (BAS) Announces Continued Growth and Expansion in Reference-Based Pricing Plan AdministrationApril 10, 2019
- Business WireHealth Care Price Check: a Couple Retiring Today Needs $285,000 as Medical Expenses in Retirement Remain Relatively SteadyApril 2, 2019
House to debate sweeping health care bill
BOSTON (AP) — The Massachusetts House is preparing to tackle a major health care bill that calls for $450 million in assessments on some larger hospitals and insurers.
The 127-page proposal is expected to reach the House floor later this week after Republican lawmakers unsuccessfully pushed for more time to review and offer amendments to the complex legislation.
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Republican legislators say raising the fee North Carolina health officials charge to test newborns for additional genetic disorders is outweighed by the health benefits of early diagnosis and lower overall health care costs.
Budget-writers held a news conference Wednesday to discuss an item in this week's budget adjustments that would increase the state's newborn screening fee from $44 to $128
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — A proposal to create government price controls in California for surgeries, hospital stays, doctor visits and other health care services died Friday when it failed to clear a key committee, but the author says he plans to bring it back next year.
Governor Northam vetoes GOP healthcare bills
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam has vetoed a handful of GOP-backed bills related to health care.
Northam vetoed a bill that would have allowed all groups like the Virginia Chamber of Commerce to pool their members together in a group to shop for health insurance. Supporters said it would help reduce costs.
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida prisons are cutting mental health, substance abuse and re-entry programs to help make up for a $50 million shortfall in its health care and pharmaceuticals budgets.
Even prison chaplains and librarians will feel the sting for what the Department of Corrections blames on underfunding in the budget the Legislature approved in March.
U of M paid nearly $300K in sexual harassment settlements related to former athletic director Norwood Teague
Two prominent women on University of Minnesota President Eric Kaler’s senior leadership team received settlements totaling nearly $300,000 in 2016 after a sexual harassment scandal that ousted former athletic director Norwood Teague, according to newly released documents.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa received nearly $51 million Thursday from tobacco companies — the state's annual share of a 1998 landmark legal settlement in which tobacco companies pay states for smoking-related health care costs.
The Iowa Attorney General's Office says that in the last 20 years, Iowa has received more than $1.2 billion in payments under the settlement.
California bill would create health care price controls
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California's government would set prices for hospital stays, doctor visits and other health care services under legislation introduced Monday, vastly remaking the industry in a bid to lower health care costs.
The proposal, which drew swift opposition from the health care industry, comes amid a fierce debate in California as activists on the left push aggressively for a system that would provide government-funded insurance for everyone in the state.
By Katie Lannan
State House News Service
BOSTON -- Massachusetts posts the second-highest per capita health care costs in the nation, according to the Health Policy Commission, whose staff outlined a series of measures they said could save more than $4.7 billion in medical spending over five years.
When Sylvia Rosas was stung by a bee in her Florida yard in 2015, she went to the emergency room since she had experienced allergic reactions in the past and didn't have an EpiPen on hand.
But when she got the $12,000 bill, which included thousands in blood work and an EKG during visit of less than two hours, she was shocked. And since her hospital was out of network, she ended up having to pay the entire bill.
WASHINGTON (AP) — It started as a bipartisan attempt to curb soaring health care premiums.
But Congress' effort to stabilize the nation's insurance markets is faltering amid escalating demands by each party and erratic positions by President Donald Trump. Democrats want bigger federal subsidies for consumers under President Barack Obama's health care law while Republicans, still fighting that statute, aim to relax its coverage requirements and win abortion restrictions.
At this year’s legislative session, New Mexico Rep. Deborah Armstrong, D-Albuquerque, sponsored House Memorial 29 to set up a health care cost, quality and coordination commission. True Health New Mexico supported the memorial, which passed, in the hopes it will lead to cost containment and transparency.
What kind of a society do we live in? A pharmaceutical commercial shows food appearing unexpectedly at different times of the day and on different occasions. The commercial makes it clear that people do not have control over their eating behaviors and thus they need to inhale the company’s new insulin (Afrezza) to keep their blood sugars in control.
Walker’s reinsurance plan wins support from insurers, others
MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Gov. Scott Walker's $200 million plan to reduce health care costs for people purchasing insurance through the private marketplace won support from Wisconsin's health insurance providers, doctors and medical community at a public hearing Monday, even as Democrats raised concerns about its sustainability.
The Latest: Insurers, medical community support Walker idea
MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The Latest on public hearing on Gov. Scott Walker's health insurance, rural economic development bills (all times local):
Gov. Scott Walker's $200 million plan to reduce health care costs for people purchasing insurance through the private marketplace is winning support from Wisconsin's health insurance providers, doctors and medical community.
The Legislature's budget-writing committee heard the measure Monday.
Warren Buffett says health care costs are like a tapeworm on the American economy.
Medical experts say: We should be so lucky.
The famed investor known for his folksy wit drew the tapeworm analogy in late January when explaining why he’s joining forces with Amazon and JPMorgan Chase in a high-profile effort to tackle the intractable problem of rising expense for health care.
Can 3 business titans cure the US health care system?
NEW YORK (AP) — Can a legendary investor, the king of on-line retail and a Wall Street financier find a cure for what ails America's health care system?
The trio of Warren Buffett, Jeff Bezos and Jamie Dimon have had enough success in their respective industries that they are at least being given the benefit of the doubt.
The Latest: Oregon approves new taxes for Medicaid costs
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The Latest on an Oregon special election on whether to allow Medicaid taxes on hospitals and health insurers to stem health care costs since (all times local):
Oregon voters have approved taxes on hospitals, health insurers and managed care companies to address rising Medicaid costs.
The single-issue election Tuesday drew national attention because it gave voters -- and not lawmakers -- the final say on how to fund increasing health care costs.
Vermont considering drug importation as way to save money
MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — The Vermont Senate is considering a proposal to save money on prescription drugs by importing them from Canada, where many are sold for a fraction of the cost in the United States.
The cost of prescription drugs is a factor driving the increase in state health care costs and the state budget, said Democratic and Progressive Sen. Tim Ashe. He supports the proposal that was discussed Thursday during a meeting of the Senate Health and Welfare Committee.
New laws aimed at medical bills come into effect
AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — Two new laws aimed at health care costs are coming into effect.
Starting the new year, Maine health insurance carriers will face new requirements under a law backed by Republican Sen. Rodney Whittemore. Carriers must allow enrollees to get cost and quality data for comparable health care services through a website and toll-free telephone number.
Carriers can satisfy that requirement by directing enrollees to the Maine Health Data Organization website.
Ketchikan considers ordinance on health care transparency
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Ketchikan officials are seeking an ordinance requiring health care practitioners in the city to disclose estimated medical costs to patients before they receive treatment.
The proposed ordinance is modeled after a measure adopted in Anchorage earlier this year that aimed to make health care costs more transparent, the Alaska Journal of Commerce reported .
Starting in 2019, people who don’t sign up for health insurance will no longer pay a fine. But, as a result, health insurance will become more expensive and fewer people will be covered, a fact St. John’s Medical Center CEO Paul Beaupre called “unfortunate.”
As a $1.5 trillion tax cut measure awaits President Trump’s signature to become law, eyes in the health care world are on the bill’s elimination of the individual mandate.