Tag: Medicare

Did landmark laws from Congress enable high drug prices?

WASHINGTON (AP) — Lawmakers are venting outrage over high prescription drug costs, but if Congress is looking for culprits, it might want to look in the mirror. Republican- and Democratic-controlled Congresses, and presidents of both parties, may have set the stage for the startling prices that have consumers on edge. In the last 13 years, Congress passed major legislation that expanded taxpayer-financed coverage for prescription drugs but lacked explicit mechanisms for dealing with costs, instead relying mainly on market forces. Lawmakers look like unwitting enablers in the eyes of some experts. “Congress in attempting to expand access to prescription...

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Will Shaming Drugmakers Discourage Price Spikes?

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Frustrated by the rising cost of prescription drugs, California health advocates hope sunlight and a dose of shame will discourage drugmakers from raising their prices too quickly or introducing new medications at prices that break the bank. They’re promoting legislation that would require drugmakers to provide advance notice before making big price increases. Pharmaceutical companies have come out in force against the measure, warning it would lead to dangerous drug shortages. Attention to prescription drug pricing has mounted since Turing Pharmaceuticals bought an old drug commonly used with HIV patients and raised the price from...

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Leading private-sector health system woos veterans in ads

CHICAGO (AP) — A leading hospital system in the U.S. is courting military veterans with a multimillion-dollar ad campaign, raising concerns from some veterans groups that private sector marketing could weaken the Department of Veterans Affairs health care system. The campaign tag lines — “Veterans have a choice in healthcare” and “You honored your oath, and so do we” — emphasize consumer preference and the shared values of medical professionals and the military. Starting Monday, TV, radio, print and online ads by St. Louis-based Ascension Health’s will urge veterans to call a toll-free number for information about Veterans Choice,...

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Does Trump have a health care plan? Does it matter?

WASHINGTON (AP) — Donald Trump’s evolving ideas on health care do not amount to a full plan, and some proposals could mean new political and policy dilemmas for the Republican presidential front-runner and his party. One Trump idea — allowing Medicare to negotiate prescription drug prices — puts him at odds with Republican congressional leaders who favor the current system of private benefit managers bargaining with drugmakers. It aligns Trump with Democrat Hillary Clinton, who also favors direct negotiation by Medicare. The Trump campaign late Wednesday released a seven-point outline for replacing President Barack Obama’s health care law and...

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Cancer ‘moonshot’ aims to speed fight against No. 2 killer

WASHINGTON (AP) — Harking back to America’s triumphant race into space, the Obama administration is launching what it calls a “moonshot” effort to cure cancer. Don’t expect miracles in the administration’s last months in office. “It probably won’t be cured in my lifetime, but I think it’ll be cured in yours,” President Barack Obama told a 4th-grader in Baton Rouge on Thursday. There’s been striking progress in recent years even though cancer remains the nation’s No. 2 killer. Obama assigned Vice President Joe Biden to figure out how to speed that progress. Details are still to come but topping...

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