Archive for June, 2010

Medicare looking at Dendreon cancer vaccine

The Medicare program said on Wednesday it was evaluating data on Dendreon Corp’s prostate cancer therapy to decide whether to cover the product Nationwide for seniors in the federal health program.

Physicians Can Waive Medicare Coinsurance Relative to 2.2 Percent Pay Increase

The federal government has waived a Medicare regulation that would require physicians and other Medicare providers to bill patients for additional coinsurance, also known as cost-sharing amounts, relative to the recently passed 2.2 percent Medicare physician payment increase.

Medicare-TennCare billing investigation settled

An investigation of a southeastern Tennessee physical therapy company’s billing of Medicare and TennCare has led to a $1.8 million settlement.

Medicare Approves Doctor’s Holistic Healing Program

Just this past month, Medicare finally gave approval to Ornish’s program of a plant-based diet, meditation, exercise and support groups to treat heart disease.

Braley’s Medicare campaign pays off

Federal officials have launched the first of two studies to consider realigning the way doctors who care for Medicare patients are paid.

Medicare Advantage problems blamed for disenrollments

More public data on why enrollees leave private plans would help other seniors, the Medicare Rights Center concludes.

Experts evlauate impact of Medicare Part D program on independent and chain pharmacies

The Medicare prescription drug, Improvement, and modernization act of 2003 added prescription drug coverage to Medicare beginning in January 2006.

Medicare changes could shortchange vulnerable hospitals

The U.S. government’s plan to base Medicare payments to hospitals on certain quality-of-care measures could end up transferring funds away from hospitals in the nation’s poorest, underserved areas, an analysis published Tuesday suggests.

The Medicare ‘Doc Fix’: How to Make Political Lemonade

June 29, 2010 – The mechanism that governs the growth rate of Medicare spending on physician services isn’t working. The Sustainable Growth Rate put in place in 1997 is supposed to keep total Medicare physician costs from growing faster than the overall economy.

CMS Issues Proposed Rule to Implement New Medicare Services Added by Health Reform

June 29, 2010 – The Centers for Medicare & medicaid services issued a proposed rule on Friday that would implement key provisions in the Affordable Care Act of 2010 that expand preventive services for Medicare beneficiaries, improve payments for primary care services, and promote access to health care services in rural areas.

Medicare Part D Donut Hole and the $250 checks: The Real Deal

There’s been a lot of confusion over the $250 checks the federal government is handing out to some senior citizens. Just because you’re on social security does not mean you’re…

Experts analyze benefits, opportunities and challenges of Medicare Part D

Medicare Part D added prescription drug coverage to Medicare beginning in January 2006. This has dramatically reshaped the prescription drug insurance market and has had significant effects on insurers, beneficiaries, and providers. For researchers, it has provided a rich source of research questions to examine. A special themed issue of Research in Social and…

Preservation of Access to Care for Medicare Beneficiaries and Pension Relief Act signed into law

The President signed into law on Friday, June 25, 2010, The Preservation of Access to Care for Medicare beneficiaries and Pension Relief Act. The bill was approved by the U.S. House of Representatives by a vote of 417 to 1. The Senate had earlier approved the measure.

CMS Will Allow Nonparticipating Physicians to Start Participating in Medicare

Physicians who are not currently participating in Medicare have an opportunity to take part in the program and to change their status from nonparticipating to participating, according to CMS. The offer, which only applies to physicians whose current status is nonparticipating, is available through July 16.

Medicare Physician Fee Schedule Change Passed and Signed into Law

HOUSTON—-The President signed into law on Friday, June 25, 2010, The Preservation of Access to Care for Medicare beneficiaries and Pension Relief Act. The bill was approved by the U.S.