Category Archives: Government

Medical ethicist discusses Right-to-Try legislation

Sibyl Wilmont

About Sibyl Wilmont

Sibyl Wilmont is a second-career registered nurse and clinical researcher with more than 25 years of experience in health care journalism, patient advocacy, pharmaceutical/biotech PR, and academic medical communications.

Photo: Marko Javorac via Flickr

Taken at face value, Right-to-Try (RTT) legislation sounds like a no-brainer, promising to improve access to treatments yet unapproved for marketing by the FDA for people with terminal illnesses. But it’s not that simple, according to Alison Bateman-House, Ph.D., M.P.H., M.A., an ethicist and assistant professor at the New York University School of Medicine.

In fact, many of its basic provisions make it unlikely to deliver on its promise. At a New York City Metro AHCJ Chapter meeting in November, she discussed reasons for her argument that RTT will only serve to limit, rather than expand, access to potentially life-saving treatments. Continue reading

What to expect in the Senate’s health care debate

Joanne Kenen

About Joanne Kenen

Joanne Kenen, (@JoanneKenen) the health editor at Politico, is AHCJ’s topic leader on health reform and curates related material at healthjournalism.org. She welcomes questions and suggestions on health reform resources and tip sheets at joanne@healthjournalism.org. Follow her on Facebook.

Photo: Sam Bowman via Flickr

Reconciliation. Vote-a-rama. Budget points of order. What’s going on in the Senate?

The short version is that the Senate is going to spend at least the next few days (and nights) debating bills that would repeal and/or replace the Affordable Care Act.

It will vote on many amendments, from both Republicans and Democrats – some during a lengthy “vote-a-rama” offered by both Republicans and Democrats. And the whole process will be governed by budget reconciliation rules with the Senate Parliamentarian as the referee. Continue reading

Patient access to health records in jeopardy amid heath policy upheaval

Rebecca Vesely

About Rebecca Vesely

Rebecca Vesely is AHCJ’s topic leader on health information technology and a freelance writer. She has written about health IT since the late 1990s for a variety of publications.

Amid the deep uncertainty over what changes Congress could make to the health care sector in the coming years, patients would benefit from having access to their own medical records.

Insurance coverage losses, changes in insurance plans and cuts to provider networks could happen if the Affordable Care Act is repealed, repealed and replaced or is weakened because of lack of support from the Trump administration. Continue reading

Repeal and replace: The chaotic Senate approach

Joanne Kenen

About Joanne Kenen

Joanne Kenen, (@JoanneKenen) the health editor at Politico, is AHCJ’s topic leader on health reform and curates related material at healthjournalism.org. She welcomes questions and suggestions on health reform resources and tip sheets at joanne@healthjournalism.org. Follow her on Facebook.

Photo: William Allen via Flickr

Confused about which bill the Senate is going to take up to begin its ACA repeal debate?

So is the Senate.

Remember the grief Nancy Pelosi took for saying, “we have to pass the bill so that you can find out what’s in it” during the Affordable Care Act debate? Continue reading

AHCJ continues to advocate for release of hospital inspection reports

Irene M. Wielawski

About Irene M. Wielawski

Irene M. Wielawski (@wielawski), an independent journalist based in New York, is a founder and former board member of AHCJ and serves on the organization’s Right to Know Committee.

See the full comment at Regulations.gov.

AHCJ has submitted a statement to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services supporting the agency’s proposal to open hospital inspection reports to the public.

The proposed rule change applies to inspections by private accrediting organizations, which are often kept secret, even though they detail patient safety shortcomings of potential interest to the public.

Continue reading