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Blog Post
1/18/2010
Judy Dugan
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said little about health care, though the one fragment that is quoted leaves no doubt about where he stood: “Of all the forms of inequality, injustice in health care is the most shocking and the most inhumane.” The quote is hard to confirm (see notes below), but health care proponents losing ground to a fear...
Blog Post
1/12/2010
Posted by Judy Dugan
California has been a leader in patients rights, largely in response to abuses  by HMOs that, for instance, tried to eject new mothers and babies from the hospital a few hours after giving birth, and attempted to require "drive-by mastectomies."  The federal health reform bill could weaken or do away with all that, including a...
Blog Post
1/5/2010
Judy Dugan
It's clear that any final version of health reform will be controlled by private, largely for-profit insurance companies. Their aim, once you strip out the P.R., is to make more money, not to give you better care. To keep fighting back, we need the help of insiders--the people who know the secrets of the health insurance industry. Former corporate...
Blog Post
12/29/2009
Posted by Judy Dugan
Health insurers, hospitals and even some state-level doctor groups are gearing up for the next battle against reform, in state capitols. So, just as insurance companies used your ever-rising premium dollars to coerce their employees into lobbying against a public option and a Medicare expansion, they'll spend lavishly in the states to stop...
Blog Post
12/28/2009
Posted by Judy Dugan
I've been reading the latest amendments to the Senate health bill, hunting for overlooked lobbyist time bombs in the fine print but finding some reasons to hope as well. Of course, since the insurance companies and medical industry killed the public option and a Medicare buy-in for people over 55, they can just sit back and wait for millions of...
Blog Post
12/16/2009
Posted by Judy Dugan
This sizzling editorial (two words you can't often use together) in the New York Times lays out the damage Sen. Joe Lieberman has singlehandedly done to health reform. It's the best argument you could find for following the call of my colleague, Jamie Court, to dump the Senate's 60-vote "filibuster rule" that lets industry mouthpieces...
News Release
12/15/2009
CONTACT CONTACT: Jerry Flanagan, (310) 889-4912; or Carmen Balber, (202) 629-3043
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The failure of the U.S. Senate to allow importation of prescription drugs to cut costs, much less the more effective direct bulk purchasing of prescription drugs, is just the latest example of how big industry controls the health reform debate, according to Consumer Watchdog. "The proposed drug amendment by Senator Dorgan...
Blog Post
12/14/2009
Posted by Judy Dugan
When Sen. Joe Lieberman said last week that he might favor a health reform bill that traded away a "public option" for letting people over 55 buy into Medicare, he must not have checked with his bosses first. Now that the insurance industry has come out against it, so has Joe. After all, it's his home state industry and he must do as it...
Blog Post
12/10/2009
Posted by Judy Dugan
What does Republican Party chair Michael Steele have to say about health reform? "Delay, stall, slow down and ultimately stop [the bill]." That's the ultimate synchronization with the health insurance industry's business plan: Delay approval until the patient quits trying. Stall payment to doctors until they tear their hair out. Go slow...
Blog Post
12/7/2009
Posted by Judy Dugan
The Senate took up the right to abortion in the health reform debate today, with a proposal by Sen. Ben Nelson of Colorado to mirror the punitive restrictions in the House version. Except for Nelson, who was a rabidly anti-choice governor, not one other senator had the guts to speak in favor of a measure they fully intend to vote for. Total...