Physicians are departing at an alarming rate—both those who work in independent practices and those in Congress who have fought to protect the doctor-patient relationship. Physician practices: At least 110,000 physicians have left private practice since the Covid pandemic began, with most becoming employees of hospitals, health systems, and private equity firms that are aggressively … [Read more...] about Is There a Doctor in the House?
Once in a while, a bill becomes law that is incredibly effective in creating incentives for a dynamic and hugely successful public-private sector partnership. It happened in 1980 when two senators—Bob Dole of Kansas and Birch Bayh of Indiana, a Republican and a Democrat—got a bill passed that did just this. Bayh-Dole, as it is now widely known, created a new pathway for private … [Read more...] about Misguided and Dangerous
We offered hope in last week’s newsletter that we can fight our way out of the thicket of problems in our health sector by tapping the huge store of human ingenuity ready to offer solutions most of us can’t even imagine. It is important that more than half of Americans still have and value their private health coverage, but they are increasingly alarmed about costs—more than $30,000 a … [Read more...] about Flashes of Freedom
As health care has moved to a lower-tier issue, it can be hard to generate enthusiasm to persevere for change that is so badly needed. While far too many political leaders find healthcare complicated and boring, in our wonderful circle of colleagues in the health policy community, health care is a passion. We know this is the front we are defending in the never-ending battle to … [Read more...] about What It’s All About
Last week, we wrote about why it’s getting harder and taking longer to get doctors’ appointments. And it’s getting worse. Payments to physicians for treating Medicare patients were cut by 3.4%, starting January 1. The American Medical Assn. is among many others fighting to reverse the cuts. AMA President Jesse Ehrenfeld says Congress must include a fix in the budget … [Read more...] about Health Care Dysfunction
If you live in California and are experiencing long waits to get appointments with your doctors, it’s going to get worse. California this week further expanded free health coverage to include all undocumented immigrants. Gov. Gavin Newsom says this as an essential humanitarian gesture. “We’re making sure families and communities across California are healthier, stronger, and … [Read more...] about More Competition for Care
We reported to you earlier about progress the House of Representatives has made in advancing, on a bi-partisan basis, pro-consumer health reform legislation. This week, two more bills were passed—more positive progress than has been made since Sen. John McCain’s famous thumbs down in 2017. All three bills passed the House with bi-partisan support and await Senate … [Read more...] about Major Healthcare Bills Pass House
Twenty years ago today, in a huge ceremony at DAR Constitution Hall near the White House, President George W. Bush signed into law the Medicare Modernization Act, creating major new programs that put power in the hands of consumers instead of government. The MMA created a tax break for working Americans to save for their health care expenses and gave seniors new options to get … [Read more...] about Happy 20th!