Noteworthy News of the Week

Posted on February 18, 2011

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Here is some of the top health related news for the week. Let us know your favorite!

2011 Regional Health Dialogues – The Massachusetts Department of Public Health Invites You to Participate in Our Sixth Round of Regional Health Dialogues. Please Join MDPH Commissioner John Auerbach for a statewide series of Regional Health Dialogues to discuss New Priorities in Public Health Policy and Programs.

Massachusetts Blues claims success with global payments: 18 Feb 2011 Emily Berry, American Medical News – Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts is claiming success with paying physicians under a global payment system in which doctors are paid a flat per-patient rate. Every group participating in the system met its budget, saved money for the practice and earned bonuses based on quality-of-care scores.

Calorie Labels Don’t Affect Kids’ Fast-Food Choices: 15 Feb 2011 Kathleen Doheny, HealthDay Reporter – Posting calorie counts of menu items at fast-food restaurants doesn’t appear to inspire teenagers and parents of younger children to order less-fattening meals, new research finds.

Experts Seek to Change Confusing Medication Labels: 15 Feb 2011, Michelle Andrews, Kaiser Health News– “Take two tablets by mouth twice daily.” This printed instruction, common on prescription pill bottles, might seem straightforward. Yet in a study, nearly half of patients misunderstood what it or other common label instructions meant.

Four States Get Waivers to Carry Out Health Law: 16 Feb 2011, Robert Pear, New York TimesThe Obama administration said Wednesday that it had granted broad waivers to four states (Florida, New Jersey, Ohio and Tennessee) allowing health insurance companies to continue offering less generous benefits than they would otherwise be required to provide this year under the new federal health care law.

Uninsured Americans With Pre-existing Conditions Continue To Gain Coverage Through Affordable Care Act: 11 Feb 2011,  U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services -New resources available to the media, consumer groups, states, health care providers, and others to increase awareness of the Pre-existing Condition Insurance Plan (PCIP), has increased enrollment in the Pre-existing Condition Insurance Plan by 50 percent in the past three months to more than 12,000 Americans.

7 states get grants to develop online shopping systems for health insurance: 17 Feb 2011 Noam N. Levey, Los Angeles Times – The Obama administration awarded $241 million in grants to seven states to develop new Internet-based systems that would let many Americans shop for health insurance online. These so-called exchanges are intended to make buying a health plan comparable to shopping the Internet for an airline ticket or a hotel room.

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