Posts Tagged ‘health care’

Homeopathic Snake Oil Fuels the Measles Crisis

June 25, 2019

Homeopathic Snake Oil Fuels the Measles Crisis

Kate Birch, a homeopath based in Minnesota, is a leading quack in the lunatic anti-vaxxer campaign behind the raging measles epidemic plaguing America’s children. Homeopathic products are essentially small vials of very expensive water or alcohol masquerading as preventatives and cures for diseases and ailments. Substances they contain are so diluted that the products are essentially placebos.

Why, you may ask, doesn’t the FDA regulate this kind of bunkum? An original Senate sponsor of the 1938 “Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act” was a dean at a Homeopathic Medical College, and made sure the act identified all homeopathic swill as drugs. Existing FDA regs are, appropriately, watered-down. Since umpteen-hundred scientific studies show that homeopathic medicine doesn’t work, even the woo-woo department of NIH, the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, points out that homeopathy is bunk.

More:

“US homeopaths claim ‘therapies’ prevent measles and ‘cure’ autism,” Ed Pilkington, The Guardian

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Here Comes TrumpCare

March 28, 2019

Here Comes TrumpCare

Fresh from being not exonerated, legal titan Donald Trump has decided that the Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional, probably because the ACA is often called “ObamaCare.” After conferring with Dr. Mick Mulvaney and senior faculty at Trump University Medical School, the President proposes replacing the ACA with … nothing.

While this will leave 20 million Americans without health insurance and put 100 million at risk, people with preexisting conditions will get exactly the same coverage.

More:

“Trump Administration reverses course, supports decision to strike down ACA,” Kevin Truong, MedCityNews

“White House Obamacare reversal made over Cabinet objections,” Eliana Johnson and Burgess Everett, Politico

“Trump’s all-or-nothing ACA gamble,” Sam Baker, Axios

“The Trump approach to healthcare: Break it and figure out the rest later,” Jon Healey, Los Angeles Times

“Trump: GOP will have replacement if Obamacare is struck down, but no plan is in sight,” John T. Bennett, The Hill

“McConnell to Trump: Health care’s all yours,” Burgess Everett, Politico

“Kevin McCarthy tells Trump new health care push makes no sense,” Jonathan Swan, Sam Baker, and Alayna Treene, Axios

“Donald Trump is very committed to taking away your health insurance,” Sarah Kliff, Vox

“Health insurer stocks fall after Trump administration seeks overturn of Affordable Care Act,” Bertha Coombs, CNBC

Updates:

“Trump’s health care agenda is a legal disaster,” Dylan Scott, Vox

“By striking at Obamacare, Trump could unravel his own drug pricing proposal,” Emily Kopp, Roll Call

(more…)

U.S. Culture War: Doctors vs. Midwives

February 4, 2019

In others countries, many births are attended by midwives. Why is the U.S. different? A Vox/Pro Publica video by Ranjani Chakraborty.

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Mitch McConnell Says He’s Coming For Your Health Care

October 22, 2018

Mitch McConnell Says He's Coming For Your Health Care

“Republicans could try again to repeal Obamacare if they win enough seats in U.S. elections next month, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell said on Wednesday, calling a failed 2017 push to repeal the healthcare law a ‘disappointment.’

In a forecast of 2019 policy goals tempered by uncertainty about who would win the congressional elections, McConnell blamed social programs, such as Social Security and Medicare, for the fast-rising national debt.”

— “McConnell says Senate Republicans might revisit Obamacare repeal,” David Morgan, Reuters

More:

“Mitch McConnell blames the soaring deficit on Medicare and Social Security, not the GOP tax cuts,” Peter Weber, The Week

“Republican Doublespeak on Health Care Starts at the Top,” Max Nisen, Bloomberg

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Health Care Super Users

April 5, 2018

Each year,  5 percent of the U.S. population is responsible for 50 percent of the nation’s medical spending. Animation by Yukai Du. Written by Yukai Du, Nicolas Pollock, and Andrew McGill for The Atlantic.

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Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on Health Care

January 15, 2018

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on Health Care

“Of all the forms of inequality, injustice in health is the most shocking and inhumane.”

— Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. addressing the Medical Committee for Human Rights, 1966

Image source: Library of Congress.

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Congress Puts Millions of Children at Risk for Christmas

December 21, 2017

Congress Puts Millions of Children at Risk for Christmas

The Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) provides health coverage to poor children, through both Medicaid and separate CHIP programs. CHIP is administered by states, according to federal requirements. The federal government provides matching funds to help almost 9 million poor children get medical care.

Congress let CHIP funding lapse in September, and state governments are running out of money for poor children’s medical needs. Congress was too busy giving corporations and the rich big tax breaks for Christmas, so it won’t won’t renew the CHIP program until 2018.

More:

“Congress Will Not Renew The Children’s Health Insurance Program This Year,” Eric Levitz, New York Magazine

“Kids’ health insurance hangs in balance, and parents wonder what’s wrong with Congress,” Robert Samuels, Washington Post

“This Congress’s clear priorities: corporations, not children,” Dylan Scott, Vox

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Congress Puts Millions of Children at Risk

November 2, 2017

Congress Puts Millions of Children at Risk

The Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) provides health coverage to poor children, through both Medicaid and separate CHIP programs. CHIP is administered by states, according to federal requirements. The federal government provides matching funds to help almost 9 million poor children get medical care.

Until now. Congress let CHIP funding lapse over a month ago, and state governments are running out of money. Apparently the GOP is holding the health of millions of poor children hostage in an attempt to weasel out of more ACA requirements.

More:

“States prepare to shut down children’s health programs if Congress doesn’t act,” Colby Itkowitz and Sandhya Somashekhar, Washington Post

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Which Health Care Bill Will the Senate Vote On, Anyway?

July 24, 2017

Which Health Care Bill Will the Senate Vote On, Anyway?
Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has called for a Senate vote on a bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act (aka ObamaCare), but it’s not clear just which GOP bill will be considered. Will it be:

One thing is clear: whether it’s Door #1, #2, or #3, the deal will cut taxes for the rich and increase premiums for anyone who still has health insurance.

More:

“Everyone is confused about the health care vote — including Republican senators,” Tara Golshan, Vox

“The Republicans Have Three Health Care Bills And No Clear Paths Forward,” Anna Maria Barry-Jester, FiveThirtyEight

“Senate GOP: Knowing Health Care Plan Is ‘Luxury We Don’t Have,’  Joe Williams and Lauren Clason, Roll Call

“Ahead of key vote, details of GOP health bill still unknown,” Hope Yen, Associated Press

“Senate Republicans don’t know what’s in their health bill or what it would do. They’re voting anyway.” Dylan Scott, Vox

“Trump makes veiled threat to GOP on Obamacare,” Rebecca Morin, Politico

Related:

“Parts of Senate GOP Health Care Bill Break Rules, Parliamentarian Says,” Mary Ellen McIntire, Roll Call

“Mixed signals from Trump White House on health care strategy,” Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar and Ken Thomas, Associated Press

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GOP Bill Destroys Health Coverage for 32 Million

July 20, 2017

GOP Bill Destroys Health Coverage for 32 million

Next week, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell will bring his Affordable Care Act Repeal bill up for a vote after all. If passed, the bill would repeal the ACA (aka ObamaCare) in two years, but doesn’t provide a replacement. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) estimate that, if the bill passes, 17 million Americans would lose health coverage next year, 32 million by 2026. CBO estimates that average insurance premiums would rise 25 percent next year, 50 percent by 2020, and double by 2026.

Worried insurers would probably start leaving the individual insurance market in the next few months or hike rates sharply.

President Trump threatened Senate Republicans with political retribution if they don’t vote for the homicidal bill. He’ll probably tweet them from the golf course this weekend to make sure they’re working on it [Update: Yes he did].

More:

“CBO Makes It Clear Repealing Obamacare Without a Replacement Would Be a Disaster,” Ed Kilgore, New York Magazine

“Here’s what health care looks like if Republicans’ Obamacare ‘repeal and delay’ plan succeeds,” Max Ehrenfreund, Washington Post

“H.R. 1628, Obamacare Repeal Reconciliation Act of 2017: Cost Estimate,” Congressional Budget Office

Update:

“Parts of Senate GOP Health Care Bill Break Rules, Parliamentarian Says,”Mary Ellen McIntire, Roll Call

Related:

“Trump can’t make a health care deal because he doesn’t understand health care,” Ezra Klein, Vox

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