Viewpoints: Berwick Says Health Law Puts System ‘On The Right Track;’ Mandate’s Effect Overstated; Questions About Axelrod’s Ties
The Washington Post: Putting Health Care On The Right Track
Obamacare is helping our nation achieve health care that is excellent, accessible to all and affordable. In the 17 months that I led the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), I saw how this law is helping tens of millions of families and is finally putting our health-care system on the right track (Dr. Donald Berwick, 6/21).
Los Angeles Times: How To Make U.S. Healthcare Even Worse
What can we expect when the Supreme Court rules on healthcare reform in coming days? The prognosis isn't good. I've spoken with various healthcare experts, and the consensus is that the conservative wing of the high court will probably strike down the so-called individual mandate that requires most people to buy insurance. At the same time, though, the justices aren't expected to throw out the entire reform law, leaving a number of provisions intact (David Lazarus, 6/22).
Dallas Morning News: Looking Past The Individual Mandate
Anyone watching TV or reading newspapers could easily believe that President Barack Obama's health care reform revolves entirely around the individual mandate, which would require Americans to buy health insurance if they are not covered at work or by Medicare or Medicaid. Enemies of reform have demonized the mandate to scare the public, and they are urging the Supreme Court to use this provision to rule the law unconstitutional. What many Americans don't realize is that the individual mandate would affect fewer than 2 of every 100 people, according to the best estimates. When all is said and done, a few Americans might still refuse to buy insurance — and nothing much will happen to them (Theda Skocpol and Lawrence Jacobs, 6/21).
Boston Globe: Some Reforms To Survive Regardless Of Supreme Court Ruling
There was good news on the health care front recently. UnitedHealthcare, the nation’s largest health insurer, announced that regardless of what the US Supreme Court decides about Obamacare, it will maintain some of the law’s popular protections. … Kudos to UnitedHealthcare for setting an example other insurers should follow (6/22).
The Wall Street Journal: My Health-Care Alternative For The Old And Poor
It's time to move beyond ObamaCare. Whether it is struck down by the Supreme Court, defunded by Congress, or simply collapses from its unsustainable costs and the impossibly complicated bureaucracy it seeks to impose, ObamaCare won't work. It will depress the economy, increase the national debt, discourage medical innovation, and erode the quality of health care (Devin Nunes, 6/21).
The Wall Street Journal: Axelrod's ObamaCare Dollars
Rewind to 2009. The fight over ObamaCare is raging, and a few news outlets report that something looks ethically rotten in the White House. An outside group funded by industry is paying the former firm of senior presidential adviser David Axelrod to run ads in favor of the bill. That firm, AKPD Message and Media, still owes Mr. Axelrod money and employs his son (Kimberley Strassel, 6/21).
JAMA: How Medicare Solves Private Plans' Problems And Vice Versa
For some reason, when it comes to health insurance, most people seem to think either private plans in competition are best or a government option, like Medicare, is preferable. Few seem to recognize the benefits of the coexistence of private and public alternatives. In fact, each plan type can help the other perform better than it would have if it were the only option (Austin Frakt, 6/21).
McClatchy Newspapers: Prostate Cancer: We Can Do Better
The panel that I chair, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, has just issued a recommendation against screening men of any age for prostate cancer using the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test. The draft of this recommendation was posted for public comment in October. Since then, we have read the many comments received, reviewed newly released evidence, and arrived at this conclusion: Many men are harmed as a result of prostate cancer screening and few, if any, benefit (Virginia A. Moyer, 6/22).
Los Angeles Times: A Soda Ban, L.A.-Style
For too many years, Los Angeles city schools were purveyors of empty-calorie, health-jeopardizing, sugary soda pop, sold to captive audiences of young students who were forming the eating and drinking habits they would take with them into adulthood ... The point is that the city should be providing its people with healthier refreshment choices on site. It need not be in the junk-drink business (6/21).