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MARCH 22, 2017

VIRGINIA

Henrico Doctors’ Hospitals Named One of the Nation’s 100 Top Hospitals by Truven Health Analytics, IBM Watson Health
(OurHealth Richmond – March 2017)

HCA Virginia’s Henrico Doctors’ Hospitals recently was named one of the nation’s 100 Top Hospitals® by Truven Health Analytics®, part of the IBM Watson HealthTM business. Truven Health Analytics is a leading provider of information and solutions that support healthcare cost and quality improvement.


Sentara Obstetrics & Gynecology to open April 3
(The Gazette-Virginian – March 21, 2017)

Having access to high-quality, convenient obstetric and gynecological care is important for every woman. Beginning April 3, Sentara Obstetrics & Gynecology will present the women of Halifax County and the surrounding area with a new, comprehensive, high-quality women’s health care option, right here in their hometown.


Rep. Taylor said he’ll vote for GOP bill to replace Obamacare
(The Virginian-Pilot – March 21, 2017) METERED PAYWALL

U.S. Rep. Scott Taylor said Tuesday he’ll vote this week for Republican legislation that would overhaul the health care system, abolishing key components of the Affordable Care Act. Taylor declared his intentions just hours after he and other GOP lawmakers met privately on Capitol Hill to hear President Donald Trump’s aggressive push for their votes.


MISCELLANEOUS

The Future of Health Care Is Outside the Doctor’s Office
(Governing – March 2017)

Eastern Kentucky, with its small communities nestled in the Appalachian Mountains, is well known as one of the poorest pockets of the country. What’s sometimes forgotten, though, is how the region’s economic decline has gone hand-in-hand with a long history of poor health.


American Heart Association Launches Cardiac Precision Medicine Data Platform
(Healthcare Informatics – March 17, 2017)

The American Heart Association developed a data discovery platform, the Precision Medicine Platform, which will allow researchers and physicians to access and analyze volumes of cardiovascular and stroke data. AHA developed the cloud-based cardiac precision medicine platform in collaboration with Amazon Web Services (AWS), with the goal of sharing data to better treat and prevent heart failure, stroke, coronary artery disease, atrial fibrillation and other cardiovascular diseases and accelerate the care of patients.


Tobacco treaty has helped cut smoking rates, but more work needed
(Reuters – March 22, 2017)

A global tobacco treaty put in place in 2005 has helped reduce smoking rates by 2.5 percent worldwide in 10 years, researchers said on Tuesday, but use of deadly tobacco products could be cut even further with more work on anti-smoking policies.


Estimated Perinatal HIV Infection Among Infants Born in the United States, 2002-2013
(The JAMA Network – March 20, 2017)

Data reported to the National HIV Surveillance System show that the estimated number of infants born with perinatal HIV infection decreased from 216 in 2002 to 69 in 2013. Maternal and infant factors associated with infant HIV infection include late maternal diagnosis and lack of antiretroviral treatment and prophylaxis.


REFORM

The House GOP amended its health care bill, but CBO estimates of coverage losses are not likely to meaningfully improve
(Brookings – March 21, 2017)

Late Monday night, House Republican leaders unveiled a “manager’s amendment” that makes several changes to the American Health Care Act (AHCA). The House is currently scheduled to vote on an amended version of the AHCA sometime on Thursday.


GOP health care bill would kill 1.8 million jobs in 2022, says new analysis
(McClatchy – March 20, 2017)

The U.S. economy would produce 1.8 million fewer jobs in 2022 if the Republican legislation to repeal the Affordable Care Act became law, according to a new analysis by the Center for American Progress. Two provisions in the legislation accounted for most of the projected job losses: repealing expanded eligibility for Medicaid coverage and cutting federal financial assistance for marketplace health coverage.


Trump to Republicans: Vote for Obamacare repeal or lose your seat
(POLITICO – March 21, 2017)

President Donald Trump arrived on Capitol Hill Tuesday morning with a stern message for Republicans who’ve been wobbly about dismantling Obamacare: Give me your vote or you may lose your seat in 2018.


After a day of trying to close the deal, Trump remains short on healthcare votes
(LA Times – March 21, 2017)

Despite President Trump’s personal appeals to lawmakers, the fate of the Republican healthcare bill remained uncertain Tuesday, as the fraught relationship between the president and congressional Republicans faces what could be a defining test.


House Medicaid overhaul could account for lucrative waiver funds
(POLITICO Pro – March 21, 2017) SUBSCRIPTION REQUIRED

The latest update to the House’s Obamacare repeal bill seeks to give a Medicaid funding bump worth potentially billions of dollars to states holding waivers to reform care delivery and cover uncompensated care costs. A technical change to the American Health Care Act aims to make sure those waivers would count toward states’ funding allotments starting in 2020, when Medicaid would be transformed into a budgeted program.


Democrats warn GOP: Health care bill would be disaster for battle against opioids
(STAT News – March 21, 2017)

Senate Democrats are warning Republican leadership that the health care bill moving through Congress would have disastrous consequences for the nation’s opioid epidemic, again putting the issue at the center of the debate on Capitol Hill.


Trump voters in South Georgia come to terms with GOP health plan
(The Atlanta Journal-Constitution – March 18, 2017) METERED PAYWALL

Kenneth Peek had a rough year. The South Georgia farm where he and his wife grow corn, wheat and soybeans faced a drought and lost money in 2016. So he’s working construction jobs to make ends meet. The 64-year-old hoped to catch a break on his health care costs. He has insurance through the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare, but the premiums and bills keep going up and up. That’s one reason he voted for Donald Trump, hoping “he gets this old country straightened out.”


A Young Man With Parkinson’s Frets Over The Affordability Of GOP Health Plan
(Kaiser Health News – March 22, 2017)

Many millennials have their hands full as they launch into adulthood — jobs, homes and partners. But Ford Inbody, 33, already thinks about a time when he won’t be able to work. He has Parkinson’s disease. Every night after work, he and his wife, Cortney, walk their two dogs through their Overland Park, Kan., neighborhood.


NYT Editorial: A Republican Health Care Bill in Search of a Problem
(The New York Times – March 21, 2017) METERED PAYWALL

Republican leaders in the House have been huddling over the last few days in a frantic search for enough votes to win passage of their proposed revision of Obamacare, in the process making an already flawed bill even worse. One measure of their desperation was a cynical last-minute provision that would shift Medicaid costs from New York’s rural and suburban counties to the state government, pleasing upstate Republicans who represent those counties but reducing coverage provided by the state.


Opinion: A pediatrician’s plea to lawmakers: Don’t cut Medicaid
(STAT News – March 21, 2017)

Last week I saw a 10-year-old boy — I’ll call him Omar — with asthma in my primary care clinic. As I listened to his lungs and checked his breathing, I couldn’t help but think about what President Trump, his administration, and the Congress might do to Medicaid, which Omar’s family relies on to pay for his medical care.


NY Daily Editorial: Dr. Trump’s poison pill attacks Medicaid in New York
(New York Daily News – March 21, 2017)

The price of passing the very bad health-care bill cooked up by President Trump and House Speaker Paul Ryan, which will kick 24 million Americans off the insurance rolls, just got devastatingly awful for New York, courtesy of a dirty $2.3 billion payoff to every Empire State county outside the five boroughs.


WSJ Opinion: A Defining Health Vote
(The Wall Street Journal – March 21, 2017) SUBSCRIPTION REQUIRED

The House health-care bill is gaining momentum, and on Monday night the GOP posted amendments meant to add fence-sitters to the coalition. Don’t discount the stakes: The vote scheduled for Thursday is a linchpin moment for this Congress, and a test of whether the GOP can deliver on its commitment to voters.