Read a little. Learn a lot. • Tightly-written news, views and stuff • Follow us on TwitterBe a Facebook FanTumble us!

08 Jul 2011 14:08


U.S.: Breakthrough Medicaid study proves its usefulness

  • 35% increased likelihood Medicaid users would go to a doctor
  • 15% increased likelihood they would use prescription drugs
  • 30% increased likelihood they would get admitted to the hospital source
  • » A new study with broad ramifications: The results of the National Bureau of Economic Research’s study may seem obvious, but the debate on whether or not to cut funding for Medicaid has long rested on whether experts thought low-income people would actually use the public form of medical insurance. The new study proves this is the case, and does it in an interesting way — rather than comparing the insured to the uninsured (a common tactic used before), the study treated Medicaid the same way researchers might treat a drug. The result? Fellow researchers are hailing the study as “historic” and say it’ll shape national health care debates for years to come.

26 May 2011 12:32


U.S.: Two ways Obama’s health care plan is actually working

  • Who’s getting insured? A greater number of people under 26 now get to stay on their parents’ insurance. It helps because they’re paying for it — meaning that they’re helping lower costs for the elderly. When they get older, they’ll be helped by younger generations in the same way.
  • Who’s insuring people? As small businesses are getting incentives for providing health care, insurance-providing businesses with fewer than 10 employees have grown by 46%. That’s huge; it helps people who need health care most. And the IRS has approved more incentives, too. source

28 Feb 2011 13:20


U.S.: President Obama hedges on health insurance mandate

  • old The Affordable Care Act became law, hinged on the concept of an individual mandate. Basically, everybody must buy health insurance, thus lowering the liability costs that the insured must cover for the uninsured. This prompted a slew of legal challenges from the states — mostly ones with Republican governors.
  • new President Obama has announced that he supports legislation allowing states to opt out of the individual mandate by 2014, if they can reasonably illustrate that they can keep the same coverage rates. Is a modest dose of health care reform — in truth, more health insurance reform than anything else — being watered down? source

18 Jan 2011 13:34


U.S.: America needs the healer’s touch

  • 129 million may suffer from preexisting conditions source
  • That’s the high-end estimate, thankfully. The study by the Department of Health and Human Services, aimed at Americans under 65, does state a low-end estimate of 50 million, but notwithstanding- that’s a whole lot of sick.

05 Dec 2010 10:24


World: Wikileaks has a “poison pill” ready if the site goes down

  • danger Wikileaks is reportedly under constant attack from all sides (from Amazon to Paypal to Congress to Distributed Denials of Service to INTERPOL), and Assange is worried he might be arrested soon. The odds are good, actually.
  • retaliation If that does happen, though, Wikileaks has an encrypted document called the “insurance” file – reportedly loaded with uncensored state documents. The password will get released if Wikileaks goes down. source

16 Jul 2010 17:56


U.S.: Whoa. A statistics nerd stopped Anthem’s 39% health care increase

And he did it from a hospital bed. David Axene spent 66 hours digging through numbers on a spreadsheet the week after major surgery. It was worth it. source

07 Jul 2010 10:52


Tech: Goatse Security dude: I’ve been denied a lawyer in iPad case

  • He also points out a potentially hypocritical carrying-out of the law. What’s the difference between a hacker using a public Web site to scrape information about iPad users for the purposes of publicizing and fixing a bug, and a law firm that does the same thing to scrape data about a health insurer? The hacker gets raided, arrested and denied a public attorney; the law firm isn’t dinged much at all. So is the case of Andrew “weev” Auernheimer, who broke a gag order on his case to tell you all this. Now, we’re not geniuses here, but we’re guessing social security numbers and other private data are way worse than anything “weev” took (and subsequently deleted). source

23 Apr 2010 10:50


Biz, U.S.: Washington hawking over WellPoint’s crappy insurance practices

  • As you know, the practice described in this article will soon be illegal. The Affordable Care Act specifically prohibits insurance companies from rescinding policies, except in cases of fraud or intentional misrepresentation of material fact.
  • Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius • In a letter to health insurer WellPoint regarding a Reuters article that ran yesterday. The article suggested that breast cancer patients were specifically targeted in investigations in an effort to find a way to cancel their insurance. This crappy practice, by the way, is banned in the new health care law, but experts say the bill lacks the teeth to actually stop it. source

11 Mar 2010 20:42


U.S.: Thousands of Ground Zero cleanup workers get insurance settlement

  • 10k number of defendants in the World Trade Center cleanup case; they claimed the cleanup damaged their health
  • $657M the amount defendants will get in a settlement;
    the money will come
    from a $1.1 billion
    insurance fund
  • $65k the amount that sum means for each defendant (not counting lawyer fees and other costs, of course) source

08 Mar 2010 20:30


Politics: Obama pulls out some of his campaign fire on health care

  • Let me remind everybody: those of us in public office were not sent to Washington to do what’s easy. At this moment, we are being called upon to fulfill our duty to the citizens of this nation and to future generations.
  • President Barack Obama • Making an emotional plea for Democrats to support health care. The New York Times compared the appearance to one of his early campaign speeches. Dude got emotional. Thing is, though, is all this vigor lost on the American public? Seems like all he ever does nowadays is push health care. While a good point, it increasingly feels one-note. Hopefully he’s on the last laps. source