The huge Boehner-Pelosi deal that could change Medicare forever

House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) are aiming to finalize the deal this week and put it to a vote next week, leadership sources said. There's always a possibility of it imploding, but if the plan passes and is signed into law, it would be the most important piece of health care legislation since Obamacare, and a huge achievement for a Congress that has so far been marked by unusual dysfunction.

The deal would end the perennial Medicare "doc fix" problem by replacing the widely-maligned formula for reimbursing physicians, which currently imposes steep annual cuts that Congress has regularly overridden since 2002. It's a huge headache for lawmakers as powerful health industry groups have been clamoring for a permanent fix for years. The cost of repealing the existing "Sustainable Growth Rate" payment formula is $170 billion over a decade.

The plan would also extend for two years the Children's Health Care Program, which helps insure families with children, and runs out of funding on October 1, lawmakers and aides said.

"So far as it goes, I think it's good. We need some of the structural entitlement reform. That's a good thing. I support extending S-CHIP. That's a good thing. What's not good is right now it's not paid for," said Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX), a long-serving conservative who went on to say, "I know how hard this is. Our seniors are having more and more difficulty getting doctors because Medicare doesn't reimburse, and doctors are dropping Medicare."

The big carrot for conservatives: two major reforms that cut billions of dollars from Medicare spending in the long-term. One change would require upper-income seniors to pay higher co-pays; another would reduce spending on supplemental "Medigap" plans that some elderly beneficiaries enjoy. The reforms would be phased in to avoid immediate disruptions.



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Political Cartoons by Michael Ramirez

PERFECTLY done

could not have said it better myself

Why do they always talk about cutting either Medicare or the VA. How about MEDICAID, food stamps and welfare. Under Ocare Medicare deductibles have doubled. Many seniors are opting out of seeing the Doctor's they need to see, Cut off the illegals and stop the earned income tax credits. Big savings right there.

The people who worked hard all their lives and need the coverage, don't have it!

You are so right Shirley! I am sick of hearing "cut entitlements" in the same breath as Medicare or Social Security, without the mention of the real unfunded entitlement s crap. Are who work pay into Medicare and Social Security throughout their lives. Upon retirement at age 65 or older, a monthly premium is even deducted for medicare coverage. Medicaid, food stamps, section 8 housing, etc. just come out of taxpayer money totally. Anchor babies families access SS and SSI etc through the funds given out for the anchor babies as US citizens. End birthright citizenship for children of illegal alien invaders and save big bucks. Why must seniors be penalized? Many doctors can't afford to treat Medicare patients due to current reimbursement rates. 

To put a stop to anchor babies you would have to amend the Constitution as of right now those so called anchor babies are US Citizens..

As far as Welfare goes, I as an American am glad to have that safety net, as I had to use it once myself..

The key here Stephen is, ". . . I had to use it once myself."

That is what it was intended for - a temporary measure to get you over a rough spot.  

The people that need to be cut off are those who have made it a career/lifestyle!  

How about cutting the salaries and benefits of the criminals playing civil servants?

Because nobody in Washington has the balls to do what is right

Illegals deserve NOTHING.

Washington is the pocket of the corporate elite; most legislations are to benefit the insiders and not the people. We must pass legislation similar to the Canadian health care system.  

The Canada Health Act, on the other hand, calls for universality – all residents must be covered by the public insurance plan run by their province on uniform terms and conditions. They have coverage wherever they are treated in the country, and there’s none of this stuff about limiting the doctors and hospitals that patients can use as a condition of getting full benefits. In Canada there are no financial barriers to care at the point of service as there are and will continue to be in the U.S.

Canadians don’t pay coinsurance of 30 percent or 50 percent if they have an outpatient procedure or go to an urgent care clinic, charges that are becoming increasingly commonhere. They don’t worry about paying a gigantic bill if they happen to use an out-of-network doctor or hospital. The publicly funded system north of the border bases patients’ access to medical services on need, not on the ability to pay. To use the word “ration,” Canadians ration by need; Americans ration by price and will continue to do so as the ACA is implemented.

Because it’s publicly funded, Canadian health care is more equitable. There’s no such thing as buying a platinum plan and getting first-rate coverage or a cheapo bronze policy and paying 60 percent of the bill yourself. The tiered policies available in the state exchanges further bake inequality into the U.S. system. People have wildly varying benefits depending on where they live, how old they are, where they work, and how much they can afford to spend on health insurance.

When will congress cut their salaries and live under same rules as most Americans do? Do away with feds and return power to states.

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ALERT ALERT

SICK: Leprosy On The Rise In Los Angeles 

Ahh, the joys of open borders and Democrat leadership.

California is not just a public toilet but now there is evidence that leprosy is on the rise in Los Angeles County.

Barack Obama changed US law in 2016 and allowed immigrants with blistering STDs and leprosy to migrate to the US.

Medscape reported:

Leprosy, also known as Hansen’s disease, is rarely seen in the United States, but cases continue to emerge in Los Angeles County, a new report says.

“Hansen’s disease still exists, and we need to educate medical students and physicians,” coauthor Dr. Maria Teresa Ochoa from Keck Medical Center of the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, told Reuters Health by email.

Dr. Ochoa and colleagues identified 187 patients with the disease in a review of medical records from their leprosy clinic spanning 1973 to 2018. Most patients were Latino, originating from Mexico, and they experienced a median delay in diagnosis of more than three years, the team reports JAMA Dermatology, online August 7.

Multibacillary leprosy (MB) cases outnumbered paucibacillary leprosy (PB) cases by nearly eight to one (88.6% vs. 11.4%, respectively), and Latino patients were more likely than non-Latino patients to have MB, as were patients from Central or South America (versus other regions).

Most patients (80.7%) received multidrug therapy, and most (92.6%) received antibiotics for more than two years, especially if they had MB.

Only about half of patients (56.7%) had World Health Organization (WHO) grade 0 disability (no signs or symptoms suggestive of leprosy or disability) at the one-year follow-up, whereas 16.0% had grade 1 disability (loss of protective sensation) and 26.2% had grade 2 disability (visible deformity) at the last follow-up.

Among the patients who lost protective sensation, 87.7% (50/57) did not regain it following therapy.

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