May 20, 2013
Nationwide, income fluctuations are estimated to interrupt coverage for as many as 28 million people expected to bounce between Medicaid and the federally subsidized health insurance exchanges that states are working to create, according to an article in the journal Health Affairs. Among those most at risk are seasonal and hourly workers and young adults who lack coverage through their parents or jobs, experts said.
Patients who can’t see their doctors or get their medication will either avoid care or end up in publicly subsidized emergency rooms, pushing healthcare costs even higher, experts said. And insurance premiums will rise if young, healthy people get fed up with the transitions and opt out of health coverage altogether.
via Some could have gaps in medical coverage under new law – latimes.com.
May 18, 2013
it’s worth noting that Obamacare dramatically expands the authority and the scope of the Internal Revenue Service. Two provisions in particular will require thousands of new IRS agents, and billions in funding, to enforce: the law’s individual mandate, forcing most Americans to buy government-approved health insurance; and its employer mandate, forcing most employers to take money out of workers’ paychecks to purchase costly health insurance on their behalf. Here’s why these two provisions are so intrusive, and why the only solution to the problems they create is to repeal them.
via Two Obamacare Mandates That Dramatically Expand The Internal Revenue Services Power – Forbes.
May 16, 2013
Eileen Boris and Jennifer Klein. Caring for America: Home Health Workers in the Shadow of the Welfare State. New York: Oxford University Press, 2012. 295 pp. $35.00 cloth.
Eileen Boris and Jennifer Klein state, simply, that Caring for America “gives home care a history” (5). The book covers nearly a hundred years and deftly “links together some of our most challenging social issues: an aging society and an inadequate national long-term care policy, the rise of a vast medical-industrial complex, the neoliberal restructuring of public services, the need for disability rights, the crisis of domestic labor and the decline of family income, new immigration and systemic racial inequality, the expansion of the service economy, and the precariousness of the American labor movement” (5). Boris and Klein base their history on extensive archival research along with interviews, analysis of popular and official publications, and engagement with an array of secondary materials.
More at JHPPL
May 16, 2013
David A. Rochefort and Kevin P. Donnelly. Foreign Remedies: What the Experience of Other Nations Can Tell Us about Next Steps in Reforming U.S. Health Care. New York: Routledge, 2012. 106 pp. $9.95 paper.
David Rochefort and Kevin Donnelly have produced a concise guide to the policy process for health reform using the Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act of 2012 (PPACA) as their entrée into that sometimes enigmatic and often frustrating world of health policy and politics. The book is part of a series dedicated to framing disparate social issues and presenting them in accessible, debatable, and ultimately teachable formats. The series is targeted at undergraduates and, in this case, novices in health policy. But Rochefort and Donnelly contend that Foreign Remedies will be of interest to anyone new to health policy issues. They substantiate this contention in three ways. First, their writing is clear, direct, and well organized. Second, they provide a largely nonbiased presentation of health policy, politics, and health care reform. Third, they offer realistic and usable end-of-chapter questions for discussion and debate. Foreign Remedies provides a solid foundation for understanding health policy and politics.
More at JHPPL
May 16, 2013
A primary goal of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) is to reduce the number of uninsured by making health insurance more affordable for small businesses and individuals. Toward that end, the PPACA encourages the creation of nonprofit, member-owned health insurance cooperatives to operate inside each state exchange. Co-ops face significant challenges in entering mature insurance markets, but they also possess unique characteristics that may help them survive and thrive. Using Common Ground Healthcare Cooperative in Wisconsin as a case study, this article traces the origins of co-ops in health care reform at national and state levels and analyzes the political and technical challenges and opportunities facing these organizations.
via Behind the Scenes of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act: The Making of a Health Care Co-op.
May 16, 2013
This article studies how well International Nonproprietary Names (INNs), the “generic” names for pharmaceuticals, address the problems of imperfect information. Left in private hands, the identification of medicines leads to confusion and errors. Developed in the 1950s by the World Health Organization, INNs are a common, global, scientific nomenclature designed to overcome this failure. Taking stock after sixty years, we argue that the contribution of INNs to social welfare is paramount. They enhance public health by reducing errors and improving patient safety. They also contribute to economic efficiency by creating transparency as the foundation of competitive generic drug markets, reducing transaction costs, and favoring trade. The law in most countries requires manufacturers to designate pharmaceuticals with INNs in labeling and advertising. Generic substitution is also permitted or mandatory in many countries. But not all the benefits of INNs are fully realized because prescribers may not use them. We advocate strong incentives or even legally binding provisions to extend the use of INNs by prescribing physicians and dispensing pharmacists, but we do not recommend replacing brand names entirely with INNs. Instead, we propose dual use of brand names and INNs in prescribing, as in drug labeling.
via Generic Drug Names and Social Welfare.
May 16, 2013
As the pharmaceutical industry lobbies European regulators to permit direct-to-consumer advertising (DTCA) of prescription drugs in the European Union, we found that five leading companies violated industry-developed and -promulgated standards for ethical advertising in the United States. Utilizing multiple data sources and methods, we demonstrate a consistent failure by companies that market erectile dysfunction drugs to comply with the industry’s guiding principles for ethical DTCA over a four-year period despite pledges of compliance by company leaders. Noncompliance resulted in children being exposed to sexually themed promotional messages more than 100 billion times. We argue that the guidelines are a coordinated effort by the industry to prevent unwanted federal regulation, and we introduce the concept of a blocking strategy to explain company behavior and to advance theoretical understanding of firms’ public affairs strategies. We recommend policy responses to prevent deceptive practices, protect children from adult content, and promote genuine health care education.
via The Politics and Strategy of Industry Self-Regulation: The Pharmaceutical Industry’s Principles for Ethical Direct-to-Consumer Advertising as a Deceptive Blocking Strategy.