Originally published in MedPage Today by Emily P. Walker, MedPage Today Washington Correspondent After a controversial amendment to restrict abortion was approved as part of the House healthcare bill over the weekend, senators are grappling with the abortion language in their legislation. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), who personally opposes abortion, said the issue was being negotiated. "I expect the bill that ...

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Originally published in HCPLive.com Physicians are increasingly bringing their views on healthcare reform into the examination room. Others are distributing flyers or taping up signs in the office. Given that healthcare reform has become such a contentious subject in the United States, it is not surprising that conflicts have arisen between physicians and patients who hold different views. The St. Petersburg Times ...

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by Marie Cooper Consider two patients with the same managed care plan. One has multiple sclerosis and receives an infusion of Tysabri every month. It needs pre-certification. The requirements are black and white. The patient qualifies if they have relapsing/remitting MS and have failed other therapies. The drug costs $2,000, the infusion center is another $1,000. The infusion center is a contracted provider that has ...

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Originally published in MedPage Today by Emily P. Walker, MedPage Today Washington Correspondent The House of Representatives voted 220 to 215 to pass historic healthcare reform legislation late Saturday night, after 11 hours of debate before a packed gallery of spectators. H.R. 3962 passed by a narrow margin: Democrats needed 218 votes to pass the bill and wound up with just two ...

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Originally published in HCPLive.com by Jeff Brown, MD I had the same reaction . . . shock at seeing an almost obscene claim about our profession in a national newspaper. But it got me thinking, which no doubt was its intended purpose. While we are thinking and feeling our way through this wide-ranging debate on health care, we might as well examine ...

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by Thomas C. Bent, MD As the House of Representatives prepares to vote on its historic health care reform bill on Saturday, family physicians are heartened to see the support it gives to the emerging new model of care, the patient centered medical home. The House bill is good news on many fronts. It would provide health insurance coverage for some 96 percent of Americans and would reduce the federal deficit by ...

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Only in the United States could a virus like H1N1 bring out the worst in medical politics and greed. We are facing a pandemic that requires coordination, communication and the best of medical practice. But what are we getting? Strikes, lawsuits and anything but putting patients first. The California Nurse Association (CNA), is taking this opportunity to call a strike on three large Catholic hospital chains (which comprise a total of ...

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by Bruce Goldman The U.S. health care system, although it's the costliest in the world, doesn't even deliver the goods when it comes to delivering health. That's the conventional wisdom. But is it true? At least a few well-researched studies by credentialed and respected experts suggest we might want to pause to consider whether, in the mad dash now underway to fix our ailing health care system, we could inadvertently end up ...

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Hidden in the Senate version of health reform is wording that would require insurers to consider covering Christian Science prayer treatments. Although not expected to be a big expense, this is causing some consternation, as it blurs the line between church and state. And this would likely invite other religious groups to organize, so they can receive federal dollars as well. Introduced by Sen. Orrin G. Hatch (R-Utah), it is somewhat ...

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Originally published in MedPage Today by Charles Bankhead, MedPage Today Staff Writer The physician workforce in the U.S. is growing smaller and younger, according to data from the Census Bureau, but conflicting estimates make it difficult to determine just how many doctors are out there -- and how many the nation will need. The census survey showed 67,000 fewer physicians than estimates based ...

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