President Trump on Monday endorsed a Senate bill to ban "gag clauses" that prevent pharmacists from telling customers they can save money in some cases by paying cash for their prescriptions, instead of relying on their insurance and making the co-payment.
Health Care Reform
News coverage, opinion and information on health care reform and health care policy including the Affordable Care Act.
By Tom Howell Jr. - The Washington Times
A Senate riven by disputes on a Supreme Court pick set aside the sniping long enough Monday to approve legislation to combat the opioid epidemic by limiting the runaway flow of addictive pills, expanding treatment and giving inspectors new tools to root out deadly fentanyl in the mail stream. Published September 17, 2018
The number of people taking up heroin for the first time dropped by more than half in 2017 compared to the prior year, in a sign that prevention efforts may be taking hold, according to a government survey released Friday.
House Republicans on Thursday blocked a measure that would have forced drug companies to disclose their prices in TV ads, enraging sponsors who said President Trump, influential groups and senators in both parties supported their amendment to a major health-spending bill.
The share of the U.S. populace that didn't have health insurance remained static from 2016 to 2017, the Census Bureau said Wednesday in a report that found Obamacare's gains continued to stall and that 28.5 million Americans lacked health care coverage in President Trump's first year.
Eight years ago, Sen. Joe Manchin III of West Virginia promised to "repeal the bad parts of Obamacare" in a special-election ad that features him touting his folksy bona fides and literally shooting a "cap and trade" bill designed to combat climate change.
Obamacare premiums appear to be stabilizing after years of eye-popping rate increases, according to a new analysis that says customers should expect an average rise of just 3.3 percent in 2019 and some will see decreases.
New York gubernatorial hopeful Cynthia Nixon admitted Wednesday that she doesn't know how she plans to pay for her campaign promise of universal health care, which could cost the state upwards of $140 billion.
America is in the midst of one of the worst drug epidemics in history. Unlike past crises, this one was fueled not just by illegal drugs peddled on the streets, but by the over-prescription of legal painkillers that sadly led many patients into a cycle of dependency and addiction.
A federal judge in Texas was skeptical Wednesday about whether Obamacare should stand without an actual penalty for shirking insurance under its "individual mandate," according to reports from the courtroom.
Purdue Pharma, an opioid maker that's been accused of fueling the U.S. addiction crisis, said Wednesday it is donating nearly $3.5 million to a nonprofit that is developing a cheaper version of naloxone, an overdose-reversing drug.
Were student members of the American Medical Association smoking something when they flacked a universal health care model at the AMA's meeting last June?
Congress may have cut the Obamacare penalty to zero, but that doesn't mean the individual mandate requiring Americans to have insurance is actually gone, Democratic state officials explained Thursday.
A Wisconsin senator announced a long-shot resolution Wednesday to kill President Trump's main off-ramp for customers unhappy with Obamacare, hoping to force Congress to vote to overturn his plan to allow people to buy cheaper, skimpier insurance.
Sen. Joe Manchin III of West Virginia on Monday said Senate Republicans filed legislation to shield Obamacare's protections from a pending court challenge because they are terrified the lawsuit filed by his November opponent will result in "tragic consequences."
In communities across the country, politicians at the federal, state and local levels are understandably putting solutions to the opioid epidemic at the top of their list of priorities.
President Trump demanded Monday that the Senate quickly take up and pass a bill to make it harder for overseas traffickers to slip synthetic opioids into the U.S. mail stream.
More than a dozen state attorneys general just sued the Department of Labor over a new rule that makes it easier for small businesses and self-employed individuals to form "association health plans." AHPs enable these firms and sole proprietors to band together to negotiate with insurers for better deals for health coverage.
"Queer Eye" star Jonathan Van Ness was forced to defend himself on Twitter this week amid backlash for urging fellow Democrats to "compromise" on far-left policies like free health care for all.
More than 72,000 people died from drug overdose deaths in 2017, according to early data released Wednesday from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, with nearly 30,000 of those deaths involving illicit fentanyl or its more powerful analogs.
You're nearly twice as likely to die from colon cancer living in a Latin American country than you are living in the United States.
Democratic socialist and House candidate Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Wednesday touted Medicare for all as a way to save on funeral expenses, instead of spending on "unlimited war."
The Trump administration said Tuesday it will allow private plans operating under Medicare to place patients on the most cost-effective drugs first, before turning to more expensive alternatives if they don't work.
NASCAR CEO Brian France was arrested Sunday for driving while intoxicated and a criminal possession of a controlled substance in Sag Harbor, New York.
Kratom advocates had a short-lived celebration earlier this week when new language on federal health sites purported to show support for the herbal stimulant.
The Trump administration on Wednesday cleared the way for insurers to sell short-term health plans as a bargain alternative to pricey Obama-law policies for people struggling with high premiums.
Eight years and five election cycles after the 2010 Affordable Care Act's passage, health care remains a powerful political issue -- and neither Republicans' push for skimpier, cheaper options nor Democrats' demand for more robust and costly coverage has prevailed.
Democrats in a dozen states filed a lawsuit Thursday challenging President Trump's decision to let small employers and self-employed people pool together and buy health plans that are cheaper and cover fewer benefits than what Obamacare dictates.
The Energy Department violated the law when it tweeted an anti-Obamacare column by Secretary Rick Perry last year, a government watchdog said Thursday.
Sen. Susan Collins was astonished to learn that some pharmacists are "gagged" from being able to tell customers they can save money by paying cash for their prescriptions, instead of relying on their insurance and making the co-payment.
Rates of sexually transmitted diseases in Washington, D.C., have increased, but the city's health department said this is a good thing, with more infections caught with better screening tactics.
Nearly six in 10 Americans say President Trump and his GOP allies are responsible for Obamacare-related problems because they've made changes to the law, according to a poll released Wednesday that frames the public's view on looming political battles.
Justice Louis D. Brandeis in 1914 in a book about how banks used "other people's money" wrote the now famous phrase "Sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants." That credo can be applied today to federal funding of heath studies.
Bowie, Maryland, fitness instructor Howard Harriston, 48, needed a replacement, but not just any knee would meet the demands of his active lifestyle. Technology provided the perfect solution -- in the form of a personalized replacement crafted by way of 3D imaging and printing.
The Food and Drug Administration said Friday it wants to help drugmakers produce cheaper, generic versions of prescription opioids that cannot be crushed or otherwise manipulated to produce a fast, dangerous high.
Nearly 4 million people would gain health coverage in 2019 and premiums would drop by an average of 12 percent if every state imposed its own version of Obamacare's "individual mandate" to hold insurance, a research foundation said Friday.
President Trump's health secretary ordered the Food and Drug Administration Thursday to explore ways to safely import drugs to protect Americans from sudden price hikes, though in limited circumstances.
Novartis on Wednesday became the second major drug company to defer price increases in 2018, citing a "dynamic environment" in the U.S. as President Trump attempts to swat away critics and use market-based pressure to bring costs down.
The Trump administration said Tuesday that it is pushing to let consumers purchase more medicines without prescriptions, saying better labeling and digital apps that let patients "self-select" drugs would expand access to cholesterol-reducing pills, opioid overdose-reversing naloxone and other drugs.
Watchdogs fired a double-barrel shot at the Trump administration for ethical lapses last week, ruling the Health and Human Services Department should have stopped its former secretary's lavish travel plans, and that current Commerce Secretary Wilbur L. Ross Jr. is financially entangled with businesses he shouldn't be.
One of Donald Trump's more memorable promises on the campaign trail was to lower the cost of prescription drugs. Polls show this issue remains popular with Americans — especially lower-income families — who are worried about high drug prices.
With their Obama repeal efforts failed and with customers howling over rising costs, House Republicans went back to the drawing board Wednesday looking to come up with new solutions to boost consumer choices and free businesses from the 2010 law's punishments.
The Drug Enforcement Administration now has the power to reduce the number of opioids produced each year, the Department of Justice said Wednesday.
Rogue prescribers and Medicaid "doctor shoppers" are using taxpayer-funded insurance to fuel the deadly opioid epidemic, according to a new audit Tuesday that found 1 in 6 people on Ohio's government-run health program for the poor were prescribed opioids and hundreds of them were at "serious risk" of overdosing.
Health-care-related bankruptcies, touted as a key justification for passing Obamacare in 2010, are not nearly as prevalent as reform proponents such as Sen. Elizabeth Warren have claimed, researchers say.
The federal government's top disease fighter, who built his career battling the emergence of HIV/AIDS in the 1980s, says the opioid epidemic will be even worse.
A Nebraska coalition said Thursday it submitted more than enough signatures to get Medicaid expansion on the ballot in November, making it the latest GOP-led state to seek a way around governors and legislators who oppose Obamacare.
Despite efforts to improve access to a decades-old medication that can turn the tide of the opioid epidemic, the greatest challenge remains that doctors don't want to prescribe it.
Democrats say Americans' access to Obamacare is at risk with the next Supreme Court justice, though some legal experts say they're exaggerating the issue to try to defeat President Trump's eventual nominee.
A federal judge has put Kentucky's Medicaid work requirement on hold, ruling that the Trump administration cut too many corners in granting an Obamacare waiver to the state for its experimental policy.
Federal agents carried out the biggest health care fraud takedown "in history" on Thursday, the Department of Justice said, charging more than 600 people across the country with bilking taxpayers for $2 billion through fake medical claims and prescriptions for unneeded opioids.
Sen. Susan Collins implored Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Wednesday to reconsider his hands-off approach to a lawsuit that seeks to gut Obamacare, saying nearly half of her state suffers from a pre-existing medical condition and would be at risk if the challenge strikes protections within the 2010 law.
A Senate panel scrutinizing Medicaid overpayments says the administration's push to audit states more closely is good news but that it needs to hear more from Seema Verma, who oversees the program but did not testify alongside government watchdogs on Wednesday.
Democrats are desperately trying to pivot the political conversation to health care, warning voters that the fate of their coverage -- and protections for pre-existing conditions -- depends on who wins control of Congress in this year's elections.
The House passed a massive opioid bill Friday to expand treatment options, block the flow of deadly fentanyl into the U.S. and reduce the number of addictive pills in circulation -- an unusual display of bipartisanship in a bitter election year, even as Democrats grumbled that GOP leaders still aren't doing enough.
Two blue states said Wednesday they will sue the Trump administration over its decision to get around Obamacare by letting small employers and self-employed people pool together and buy health plans that are cheaper and cover fewer benefits than what the 2010 law dictates.
Medicaid fraud has risen and bogus payments have more than doubled since Obamacare expanded the government's chief health insurance program for the poor, topping $37 billion a year, according to a new report released Wednesday by the Senate's chief watchdog committee.
The Trump administration finalized plans Tuesday to let small companies and the self-employed band together and buy health insurance outside of Obamacare's strict rules, moving to offer coverage to people priced out of the market by the 2010 health care law.
Sen. Joe Manchin III says his office has been flooded with flood with stories from West Virginia residents begging him to preserve Obamacare, saying they'll lose medical coverage and could face bankruptcy if core parts of the law are ended.
Senate Health Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander urged the Trump administration to explore ways to make waivers baked into Obamacare a "more powerful tool" for states looking to slash premiums.
Very few places in America have been harder hit by the opioid crisis than the state of Ohio. According to CDC data, the Buckeye State ranked second, only behind neighboring West Virginia, in overdose death rates per 100,000 residents in 2016. Over the last few years these mortality rates have continued to climb, despite new restrictions on prescription painkillers and better treatment for those struggling with addiction. As we seek to address this national health emergency it's important to understand what is driving these overdose deaths and what can we do to stop it.
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The Republican effort to repeal and replace Obamacare was dead and buried. The eulogies, such as they were, were over and the Health Care Freedom Act of 2017 was dispatched to a forgettable corner of the graveyard. But when a couple of senators noticed a twitch and heard a groan they pulled it out of its coffin and called the medics.
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From The Vault
Six states sued a leading opioid manufacturer Tuesday, saying Purdue Pharma used deceptive tactics to downplay the risks of its painkiller OxyContin and helped fuel the addiction crisis.
President Trump said Friday he will put "American patients first" by speeding cheaper drugs to market, forcing companies to disclose prices and leveraging trade deals to put U.S. consumers on a level playing field with those abroad.
The Trump administration said Tuesday it is developing long-lasting medications that wean people off opioids — while slashing the odds of relapse — and overdose-reversing drugs that can compete with synthetics that kill faster than regular heroin.
Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said Monday that President Trump is committed to reducing the number of prescribed opioids and retraining physicians on how to handle pain management.
Food and Drug Administrator Scott Gottlieb said Thursday his agency will be "very aggressive" in warning consumers about opioid-related products or taking them off the market, noting for too long, people thought the U.S. drug epidemic was welling up from the illicit heroin market.
First lady Melania Trump and a sweeping roster of Cabinet members will gather Thursday for a White House summit designed to highlight President Trump's efforts to tackle the opioids crisis.
Alex Azar was sworn Monday as secretary of the Health and Human Services Department, filling a critical seat in President Trump's cabinet that for months had been filled by an acting boss.
When Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. rescued Obamacare in 2012, he ruled it was legal to require Americans to hold health insurance under Congress's taxing power -- and said it was up to lawmakers to kill it, if they wanted.
President Trump, frustrated by the Senate's failure to repeal Obamacare, took his first unilateral steps to tweak the struggling heath care system Thursday by signing an executive order that clears the way for giving consumers more insurance alternatives.
Government officials on Thursday said they're scrambling to keep Americans from getting hooked on opioids in the first place, from cutting the number of pills in circulation to crafting drugs that attack pain without triggering brain receptors that crave another high.
Senate Republicans said Tuesday they're shelving their 11th-hour push to repeal Obamacare, admitting defeat in the face of three crippling defections from their majority.
Medicare enrollees will receive brand-new cards that replace their Social Security numbers with unique IDs, the Trump administration said Thursday, hoping to crack down on the type of identity theft and fraud that's soaking the federal insurance program.
High-profile liberals are rushing to back a single-payer system, signing onto the "Medicare for all" bill that Sen. Bernard Sanders will unveil Wednesday and laying the groundwork for the next big health care fight.
Congress failed to repeal Obamacare but conservatives want to see the GOP take another swing at canceling some of the health law's tax increases, saying it could be part of the new push to overhaul the tax code.
The Obama administration "misled" Americans into thinking signing up for Obamacare would be cheaper than it really was, according to an inspector general's report Thursday that said the IRS dramatically understated the actual cost of enrolling.
Gallery: 40 Photos
The Supreme Court upheld the individual insurance requirement at the heart of President Barack Obama's historic health care overhaul.
Gallery: 6 Photos
President Obama speaks about the Patient's Bill of Rights and health care reform in the backyard of a private residence in Falls Church, Va.