First Edition: July 3, 2013

Published on July 3, 2013 at 8:42 AM · No Comments

USA Today: Businesses React To Health Care Act Delay
Reaction marked a divide between representatives of big business, who mostly provide insurance already and were focused on complying with complex new reporting rules, and representatives of small business who said they need much bigger changes (Mullaney, 7/2).

Politico: GOP Gloats Over Obamacare Delay
Obamacare opponents on Tuesday had a &quotWe told you so&quot moment. … The administration defended the delay as an effort to provide flexibility to the business community, but it's bringing negative attention to the law just as the White House and its health care allies launch a major campaign to sell Obamacare to the public. Enrollment in the exchanges starts in October (Millman, 7/2).

The Washington Post's Wonk Blog: The Politics Of Delaying Obamacare
By delaying a requirement that all large employers provide health insurance, the Obama administration heads off the unseemly spectacle of companies vowing to cut jobs or workers' hours to avoid the costly mandate. But the late Tuesday action is not a free pass: It contributes to critics' claims that the White House does not have the ability to launch its biggest legislative accomplishment on schedule (Kliff, 7/2).

The Wall Street Journal's Washington Wire: GOP, Democrats Clash On Meaning Of Health-Law Delay
Republicans pounced on the Obama administration's announcement late Tuesday that it would delay enforcement of the federal health law's mandate on employers to offer workers coverage or pay a penalty, prompting some Democratic supporters of the law to praise the administration and others to pause for thought. GOP lawmakers were quick to say the shift was a sign the law wasn't ready for prime-time -; and that its most unpopular provision, the requirement that individuals carry coverage or pay a fee, should go too (Peterson and Radnofsky, 7/3).

The Associated Press/Washington Post: Ohio Tea Party Turning IRS To Advantage In Medicaid Expansion Battle
Tea party activists in Ohio want to turn an enemy -; the Internal Revenue Service -; into an ally as they fight continued efforts to expand Medicaid. In a confidential email sent to fellow Ohio tea party leaders and obtained by The Associated Press, Tom Zawistowski laid out a strategy for invoking a little-known IRS provision that allows citizens to challenge executive salaries and the nonprofit statuses of charitable hospitals (7/3).

The Associated Press/Washington Post: Justice Department, 55 Hospitals Reach $34 Million Settlement Over Medicare Fraud Claims
Fifty-five hospitals in 21 states have agreed to pay $34 million to the U.S. government to settle allegations that they used more expensive inpatient procedures rather than outpatient spinal surgeries to get bigger payments from Medicare, the U.S. Justice Department said Tuesday (7/2).

The Associated Press/Washington Post: UnitedHealthcare Notifies California Regulators That It Will Stop Selling Individual Policies
A second health insurer notified state regulators Tuesday that it will stop selling individual policies in California.UnitedHealthcare announced it will no longer offer individual insurance plans after the end of the year. It will focus instead on its core business of group plans for large and small employers (7/2).

Los Angeles Times: Doctors Prescribe Narcotics Too Often For Pain, CDC Chief Says
The nation's top public health official on Tuesday sharply criticized the widespread treatment of aches and pains with narcotics, saying that doctors are prescribing such drugs too soon, too often and for too long -; putting patients at risk of addiction and overdose. Dr. Tom Frieden, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said that doctors are relying on these powerful drugs to treat chronic pain when physical therapy, exercise and other remedies would be safer and in many cases more effective (Girion and Glover, 7/2).

Politico: Texas Abortion Bill: Committee Approves
It was the first action on the bill since the Legislature returned to the Texas capitol for a special session starting on Monday. The full chamber will now take up the bill next week (Glueck, 7/3).

Politico: GOP Sits Out Texas Abortion Fight
The RNC hasn't latched onto the fight. Few national Republicans have weighed in. And a key party official in Texas acknowledged there's no behind-the-scenes help coming, though he says he doesn't need it. Republicans will talk about the abortion bill when they're asked about it, but they aren't swooping into the fight with the same enthusiasm as liberals (Nather, 7/2).

http://www.kaiserhealthnews.orgThis article was reprinted from with permission from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. Kaiser Health News, an editorially independent news service, is a program of the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonpartisan health care policy research organization unaffiliated with Kaiser Permanente.


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