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Blog Post
10/20/2009
Posted by Judy Dugan
The biggest U.S. health insurance conglomerate, UnitedHealth Group, was basking today in a 13% profit increase, to more than $1 billion, even though it lost nearly 10% of its private customers (no job=no health insurance). Where it boosted revenue was in its Medicare managed care plans--meaning that its profits are subsidized by people who have...
Blog Post
10/1/2009
Posted by Carmen Balber
Consumer Watchdog joined six other national consumer and patient safety groups to pubish an open letter ad to Congress today opposing any effort to sacrifice innocent Americans injured by cost-cutting hospitals and negligent doctors in the quest for health care reform. The ad ran in Politico, The Hill and Roll Call today. Download it here. State...
Blog Post
9/29/2009
Posted by Judy Dugan
The five Democrats who joined 10 Republicans to kill the public health insurance option in a Senate committee today are surrounded and nurtured by a web of medical/insurance industry lobbyists. The blanket appears soundproof, from looking at the graphic below. The fact that 65% of Americans, and 73% of doctors, want a publicly run alternative to...
Blog Post
9/25/2009
Posted by Judy Dugan
A major national poll today from CBS and the New York Times finds that 65% of Americans still want a public insurance option as a voluntary alternative to private insurance. What's surprising is that the number remains so high even though 26% still believe in death panels, and 30% believe illegal immigrants could (gasp) get health care. In the...
Blog Post
9/25/2009
Posted by Carmen Balber
Outrageous insurance company practices have been in the spotlight all year (like the recent revelation that 'history of domestic violence is a pre-existing condition) but a lot more critique seemed to break through the din this week. (See CW’s exposure of internal insurer documents on other uninsurable conditions – like being a...
Blog Post
9/23/2009
Posted by Judy Dugan
No wonder Congress wasn't on the ball about the whole prisoner-torture thing. I watch a lot of Congressional hearings, but today's Senate Finance Committee on health reform was more than usually like a slow fingernail-pullng. I only half-watched, so go to this story by Politico.com for the sharpest political analysis of what happened. What I heard...
Blog Post
9/22/2009
Posted by Judy Dugan
One Senate committee, and its watered-down proposal for health care reform, is the focus of all eyes in Washington this week. Specifically, the Finance Committee is going through more than 500 amendments to a plan offered by Sen. Max Baucus of Montana.  The measure would require Americans to buy private health insurance but eliminates any...
Blog Post
9/8/2009
Posted by Judy Dugan
The latest proposal in the Washington health reform debate protects a lot of groups. Employers get protection from cost, paying very little if they don't offer insurance. Insurers get millions of new customers and protection from effective competition. Overall medical cost reduction is vague (Can you say "pilot program?"). The middle...
Blog Post
9/8/2009
Posted by Jamie Court
Wednesday's presidential address to Congress is the moment for President Obama to prove he is a real outsider, and the fate of genuine health care reform depends upon it. The President promised the public during the campaign he would be a Washington whistleblower. Obama said he would haul drug company executives before him on C-SPAN and demand...
Blog Post
9/1/2009
Posted by Jamie Court
If the City of Los Angeles can put a prescription drug bulk purchasing card in the hands of every resident, why can't the United States of America? That's the question I asked myself at the press conference announcing "LA Rx." The ferocious Station fire bearing down on Los Angeles's communication towers atop Mount Wilson diminished the...