Vol. 5, Num. 9: Drugmakers costing US $$, 'Right to Try' Bill Approved, Restrictions on Abortion Funding, Gene Therapies, $7M to Fight Ebola Outbreak, VT Passes Drug Import Law, Fix VA Med Records, FDA Approves Migraine Medicine
May 25, 2018
Volume 5, Number 9
In This Issue
Trump Admin Can Reclaim Unspent Money
The James Group, LLC
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Kaiser Health News: Drug makers Blamed For Blocking Generics Have Milked Prices And Cost U.S. Billions
The New York Times: Congress Approves Bill Giving Patients A ‘Right To Try’ Experimental Drugs
Source: The NY Times
The Wall Street Journal: Trump Administration To Advance Plan To Restrict Funding For Abortion Providers
Source: The Wall Street Journal
Bloomberg: Gene Therapies That Could Transform Diseases Get Easier FDA Path
The Hill: US To Contribute Up To $7 Million To Fight Ebola Outbreak
Source: The Hill
Kaiser Health News: Vermont Legislators Pass A Drug Importation Law. So What?
Source: Kaiser Health News
The Associated Press: Gov't Approves $10B Deal To Overhaul VA Medical Records
Source: The Associated Press
The Wall Street Journal: FDA Approves Migraine Medicine
Source: The Wall Street Journal
Margot Sanger-Katz writes for the New York Times (5/22, Subscription Publication) “TheUpshot” blog that despite the Trump Administration’s attempts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, a survey from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that the uninsured rate “remained flat at 9.1 percent in the first year of the Trump presidency.” Sanger-Katz says, “The numbers suggest a surprising resilience of the health law, and its expansion of insurance coverage, even in the face of efforts that the law’s defenders call ‘sabotage.’” Overall, the figures over the years show the ACA has “substantially reduced the number of Americans without insurance” by around 19.3 million people between 2010 and 2017.
Source: NY Times
Bloomberg News (5/17, Tracer) reports that following “years of losses, the U.S. health insurance industry figured out how make money from Obamacare last year,” a new analysis conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation revealed. Insurers did so by raising premiums. Data show that on average, the cost of “plans sold in the individual market climbed about 22 percent in 2017, as insurers boosted premiums well above what they spent on medical care.”
Politico (5/22, Ferris) reports that on Tuesday, the Government Accountability Office “delivered a victory to the Trump administration by greenlighting a proposal to claw back more than $7 billion in unused cash from the Children’s Health Insurance Program.” The article says the GAO approved most “of the administration’s $15.3 billion plan to cancel spending.” In light of this, “the White House’s plan for so-called rescissions will likely retain its filibuster-proof powers in the GOP-controlled Senate, easing the way for potential passage with a simple majority vote.”
The 2018 HSA family contribution limit is back to $6900. On April 26th, the IRS updated its decision to decrease the 2018 maximum contribution limit for family coverage only. The maximum annual contribution limit for family coverage limit is now back to $6,900. Earlier this year, the IRS had adjusted the maximum contribution limit for family coverage from $6,900 to $6,850. Yesterday the IRS updated its decision. To view the official IRS announcement, please visit the Internal Revenue Service press release.
The James Group, LLC is now posting current health insurance news articles on our Facebook page. Type in The James Group, LLC in your Facebook search box to access our page. We will keep it simple with one to three articles per week. Also, please “like” our page if you find the article(s) interesting.