Category Archives: Legal Issues

12.16.09

Public Health Provisions in the Health Reform Legislation

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With the sturm und drang over the public option, extension of Medicare to those between 55 and 64, abortion coverage, cost controls, etc., in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, H.B. 3590, there has been scant attention to the Act’s public health provisions. In this post, I’ll take a preliminary look what the Act […]

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12.14.09

The Amended Title XXVII of the Public Health Service Act (really wonky stuff)

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The Senate bill enacts its health insurance reforms primarily by amending Part A of Title XXVII of the Public Health Service Act. Conforming amendments in section 1562 apply Part A to ERISA plans (except for sections 2716 and 2718 and others that don’t apply to group health plans), and to insurers in the individual market. […]

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12.10.09

Transparency and Disclosure: Reform Bill Provisions

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Transparency and disclosure are vital, although largely ignored, issues in health care reform. Health care is the most expensive thing that we as a nation consume, and one of the most dangerous. We spend over 17% of our national income on health care. Far more Americans die each year from medical errors than from auto […]

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12.09.09

Health Courts: The Latest Fad or the Answer to Medical Liability Reform?

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When I discuss tort reform in my health law class, I usually start with the following: if tort reform is the answer, what is the question? As I suggested in an earlier post, there’s little agreement on which tort reform policy measures to implement. Despite some excellent recent empirical scholarship from Professors Hyman, Black, Silver, […]

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12.08.09

Piloting Delivery Reforms: An Interview with Kenneth E. Thorpe

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Kenneth E. Thorpe is chair of the Department of Health Policy and Management at Emory University’s Rollins School of Public Health. The O’Neill Institute’s Lester Feder spoke with him on November 17th about delivery system reforms. Lester Feder: Let me get your general take on the reform process and where we’re headed. Kenneth Thorpe: I […]

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12.06.09

Does the VA Cost Less Than Private Health Care?

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Taking a break from law, this post is about whether the Veterans Health Administration provides care more efficiently than the private sector.  Paul Krugman and others have held the VA out as a shining example of the government’s ability to provide high quality care efficiently, as well as the private sector’s need to lower costs […]

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12.04.09

Remedies Against Health Plans Under the Senate Bill

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Section 2719 of the Senate Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, HR 3590, provides for appeals of coverage determinations and claims. This section explicitly applies to group health plans and health insurance issuers offering group or individual insurance coverage. Section 1551(a) of the bill incorporates the definitions found in 42 U.S.C. § 300gg-91, which defines […]

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11.27.09

Hit the Delete Key on “Bending the Cost Curve”

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Is anyone else as sick as I am of hearing the wonky phrase ”bending the cost curve” as a proxy for why we need to enact health reform legislation? I’m all for including cost controls in whatever legislation emerges from Congress. But the primary policy goal for me remains the moral imperative of covering those […]

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11.27.09

Federalism and Health Reform

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For academics, federalism (the enduring tension between the states and the federal government for primary in formulating and implementing policy) is an endlessly fascinating source of debate and the focal point for constitutional analysis. But federalism is far more than an academic or intellectual exercise. Which level of government takes responsibility for a given issue […]

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11.25.09

More on the Constitutionality of the Individual Mandate

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See Ruth Marcus’ op ed this morning (November 25) in the Washington Post quoting Walter Dellinger, Laurence Tribe, and Jack Balkin supporting the constitutionality of the mandate.

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The views reflected in this blog are those of the individual authors and do not necessarily represent those of the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law or Georgetown University. This blog is solely informational in nature, and not intended as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed and retained attorney in your state or country.

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