KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

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Medicare To Work With For-Profit Company Seeking To Help Consumers Make Health Choices

The firm, called Amino, will get a "qualified entity" status, which gives it access to the full range of Medicare data for physicians and other health care providers, according to U.S. News & World Report. Other news accounts examine cancer drug costs for Medicare beneficiaries and the expected health problems of aging baby boomers.

U.S. News & World Report: Medicare Takes For-Profit Partner
Medicare announced Wednesday that it will provide complete, national physician-level data to a San Francisco-based start-up whose goal is to help millions of consumers nationwide make "more informed health care decisions, starting with the doctors they choose." The firm, called Amino, launched in October. It is the second national organization – and the first for-profit company – to achieve special Medicare "qualified entity" status that bestows access to the full range of Medicare data for physicians and other healthcare providers. (Sternberg, 12/16)

Reuters: Even With Smaller ‘Donut Hole,’ Medicare Cancer Pill Costs Stay High
Seniors insured by Medicare may still face high out-of-pocket costs for oral cancer medicines even after the government health program scales back a coverage gap known as the donut hole, a U.S. study suggests. To assess how changes in the Medicare drug plan known as Part D might impact patients, researchers compared benefits available in 2010 to the coverage set to take effect in 2020 and estimated how out-of-pocket costs for cancer pills could change under different prescription pricing scenarios. (Rapaport, 12/16)

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