Democrats To Unveil Options To Pay For ‘Doc Fix,’ Other Measures
News about SGR funding negotiations, other Medicare developments from around the country.
Modern Healthcare: Republicans Await Dems' Options For Funding SGR Fix
Republicans expect to receive on Thursday a list of Democratic options to pay for a large tax-cut extension measure that includes a freeze in scheduled cuts to Medicare physician pay rates. However, at least one Republican expects negotiations on the legislation to make little progress before a law freezing current policy in place expires at the end of the month (Daly, 2/8).
CQ HealthBeat: One In Four Medicare Users Would Pay Surcharges by 2035 Under GOP, Obama Plans
Under pending proposals by House Republicans and the White House, one in four Medicare enrollees by 2035 would be on the hook for monthly premium surcharges now paid only by beneficiaries with very high incomes, says a new study. A Medicare enrollee today who makes as little as $47,000 a year is among the one in four Medicare beneficiaries with the highest annual incomes, notes the study by the Kaiser Family Foundation (Reichard, 2/8).
(St. Paul) Pioneer Press: Medicare’s Lower-Cost Drug Use In Minnesota Touted
If Medicare beneficiaries across the country used low-cost medications at the same rate as some patients in Minnesota, the government insurance program and seniors would have saved $4.5 billion during 2008 without any negative health effects. That's the take-home message from a study being published today in the New England Journal of Medicine that adds to Minnesota's reputation as being home to some of the thriftiest health care in the country. Researchers found that average per-person drug spending in Minnesota cities such as Rochester and St. Cloud was $2,413 compared with just over $3,000 in high-cost areas like south Texas (Snowbeck, 2/8).