KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Illinois Prepares To Implement Medical Error Reporting Law

Illinois prepares to implement a medical reporting law while CVS receives a contract to provide $1 billion in pharmacy benefits in Texas. 

Chicago Tribune/The Associated Press: "Ten years ago, a landmark report said medical mistakes kill up to 98,000 Americans yearly. In 2005, Illinois legislators decided to do something about it and passed a measure requiring hospitals to report the deadliest kind. Four years later, the law has yet to be implemented -- and it likely won't be for at least another year. State budget woes and foot-dragging by special interests are among reasons cited for the long delay. But there are finally glimmers of progress. That includes the recent launch of a related state Web site that tracks hospital infection rates and staff levels, and the imminent start of a search for a vendor to help put the law in place. The law will require hospitals to publicly report so-called 'never' mistakes" (Tanner, 12/10).

Bloomberg reports on pharmacy benefits in Texas: "CVS Caremark Corp. was selected over other bidders for a contract valued at almost $1 billion to provide pharmacy-benefits services to retired Texas teachers. The Teacher Retirement System of Texas will now start negotiating the two-year deal with CVS, the pension fund said yesterday in an e-mailed statement. The contract, beginning in September 2010, replaces an existing agreement with CVS and allows for as many as four one-year renewal options" (Wolf and Snyder, 12/11).

The Wall Street Journal/Dow Jones also reports on the CVS deal in Texas, describing it as "a positive development for the company whose pharmacy benefits management business has been under the microscope in recent weeks because of other lost contracts" (Nolan, 12/10).

This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.