President Trump’s recent executive order, which mandates certain government agencies to “buy American” drugs and medical equipment, is setting up a potential clash with the powerful drug manufacturers’ lobby.
The order, issued August 6, would require agencies like the Department of Veterans Affairs or Department of Health and Human Services to procure domestically produced drugs and medical supplies to help mitigate shortages and difficulty obtaining certain medications from overseas suppliers. Continue reading
Recognizing that the potentially high cost of COVID-19-related hospital and physician care may cause the uninsured to forego care, the Trump administration announced Friday that it would use funds from a federal stimulus law to pay hospitals and physicians for treating those patients. In return for accepting Medicare rates in these cases, the hospitals and doctors would need to agree not to bill those patients, Stephanie Armour reported for The Wall Street Journal.
President Trump announced the plan during a daily Coronavirus Task Force briefing at the White House. The administration had been criticized when it said earlier that it would not open a special enrollment period under the Affordable Care Act for those who are uninsured or who lose their employer-sponsored coverage when they lose their jobs. Continue reading
An inaccurate statement that President Trump made during a March 19 news briefing — that the malaria drug hydroxychloroquine had been approved as a COVID-19 treatment — demonstrates how skeptical journalists should remain when covering the unfolding story about treatments and preventative measures.
While there are more than 85 trials for vaccines and treatments underway for COVID-19, scientists don’t expect them to be available to the public soon, despite what some headlines suggest. Continue reading
President Donald Trump has pledged to unveil a new plan to repeal and replace the ACA – but we haven’t seen it, and it’s not clear that we ever will. If the president does announce a plan, it’s to campaign on in 2020, not to try to enact before the November elections with a Democratic-controlled House and a divided Senate.
There’s no way to know how the Ukraine scandal will factor into health care and domestic policy. Trump may focus on impeachment and politics to the exclusion of health care – or he may try to change the subject with some kind of health platform. Continue reading
The Trump administration has been talking tough on drug prices for many months and, of course, pharmaceutical companies and other organizations have pushed back because they mostly oppose controls on the free market for prescription drugs.
For health care journalists covering these proposals, it’s essential to remain skeptical of any group that offers support or opposition and, as always, follow the money. Continue reading
Think the only big lawsuit pending on the Affordable Care Act is the Texas fight over whether the whole law is unconstitutional? Think again.
Several lawsuits are still working their way through the courts involving the unpaid cost-sharing reduction (CSR) subsidies, and risk corridor payments. Potentially, the Trump administration could be forced to pay insurers billions of dollars. (Paul Demko has reported on this extensively for Politico, and this post cribs shamelessly — but gratefully — from his knowledge.) Continue reading