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CCHF Health Freedom eNews

August 6, 2014



 

Canary in the Healthcare Coal Mine

Don't miss what's happening with vaccinations. Like the proverbial "canary in a coal mine," it's a sign of big trouble in today's health care system. Remember when health plans promised to maintain an enrollee's health through prepaid coverage that included the full range of preventive care?
 

Because of health plans, doctors are no longer vaccinating. As reported by the Arizona Republic, "It is becoming more of a hassle each year for parents to get their children vaccinated for school, as complications with insurance reimbursements are driving pediatricians to quit providing the services." In short, insurers are paying poorly or so late that doctors can't afford to vaccinate their insured patients. Some say complexity due to government policies has caused the problem.
 

Many physicians are telling parents to go to county (government) clinics to get vaccinated. For example, in Maricopa County, 10 percent of the children vaccinated last year by the county had private insurance. That's up from 3.5 percent in 2009. 
 

Health plans are short-changing government clinics too. From October 2012 to January 2013, Maricopa County spent $202,849.43 to administer vaccines to privately insured children. But as of March 2013, health plans had reimbursed the county only $102,457.66. This loss of nearly $100,400 is sustained by taxpayers.
 

That's a triple loss for the insured. First, they don't get access to the health care dollars promised to them for care. Second, they pay for promised care with their own tax dollars. And third, they're forced out of their private clinic.
 

What do health plans do with these dollars? They earn interest on them. The delay is a type of "float." The longer the float, the more money health plans make. One doctor says insurance companies take six to 12 months to reimburse him for certain vaccinations. 
 

The promise of preventive care is a ruse. Health plans charge high premiums for care they're not actually planning to pay for. And families who paid for private insurance are told to go to the county clinics where the uninsured go.  
 

I sense a frog slowly cooking. Health plans are conditioning clinics not to expect payment. Complex government policies are conditioning doctors to send their private patients to public clinics. And individuals are being conditioned to accept rationing of care they already paid for. In short, this vaccination story shows how private medicine is being subsumed by government health care with the help of managed care corporations.
 

Some predict that there will soon be only five to seven health plans for the entire country. Obamacare advances this prediction with its emphasis on managed care and its prohibition on traditional insurance.
 

But does Congress see the trap? Once government is dependent on this cabal of corporations to run the system, health plans will have the power to name their price - and extract billions from taxpayers. 
 

This collusive public-private partnership can be stopped. Donate $35, $50 or $100 today to support our efforts to awaken and engage the American people while there is time to protect your health freedom and the private practice of medicine.
 

Working every day for freedom,

 

Twila Brase, R.N., PHN

President and Co-founder

 

Talked to Stephen last week. You won't want to miss this event!

REGISTER TODAY!

 

 

 


 




News to Know:

Tough To Pay

A follow-up survey of previously uninsured Californians shows that 3.4 million more people have health insurance this year, but challenges remain. According to Kaiser Family Foundation, 44 percent of the newly insured got coverage through California's Medicaid program. About half of those with non-Medicaid coverage said paying their premium cost is difficult. More than 20% said the prime motivation to get health insurance was Obamacare's individual mandate penalty tax. (chart by Heritage)



Workplace Coverage Falling

Individual private health insurance coverage increased during the first six months of Obamacare enrollment but that number was mostly offset by a decreased enrollment in employer-sponsored health care coverage. A new Heritage Foundation report analyzes Obamacare data and shows that the drop in employer group coverage meant the net gains in new enrollment reached just over "520,000 individuals during Obamacare's first enrollment period from Oct. 1, 2013 to March 31."



Congressional Intent Versus Rule of Law

A liberal blogger analyzes the outcome of the "bombshell" Halbig court case that upheld Obamacare premium subsidies payments only for health insurance purchased through state exchanges. He argues that congressional intent also includes subsidies given through the federal exchanges, citing documents and interviews with Senate staffers who helped draft Obamacare. Has he heard of Obamacare architect, Jonathan Gruber, who in a now widely circulated video, told an audience in 2012 that only states could give subsidies?



Who's the Largest Employer?

The health care industry is now the largest employer in most U.S. states. The WSJ chart compares the dominant industries over 23 years . "From 1990 to 2013, the top industries by employment have changed from mostly manufacturing to mostly health-care and social-assistance jobs," according to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data.  Health care jobs surpassed manufacturing jobs in 2004. Meanwhile Medicare has a $43 trillion unfunded mandate. What happens when the money runs out?



Should Doctors Be Trained in Group Think?

The Institute of Medicine has issued a sweeping proposal to overhaul the $15 billion graduate medical education (GME) and doctor training, which is mostly funded through Medicare. The IOM recommends slashing 35% of payments to teaching hospitals, making the program "performance-based" and perhaps discontinuing all federal subsidies. The IOM suggests doctors need more training in care coordination, team-based care, and government-imposed quality improvement activities.



A Bill to Warn Senior Citizens

Bipartisan federal legislation known as the NOTICE Act, would require hospitals to tell senior citizens when they are "under observation" which is not reimbursed by Medicare. Many patients are not told whether they are admitted as inpatients, which Medicare will cover, or on observation status in the hospital. The classification makes a difference in out-of-pocket costs seniors must pay. The bill is co-sponsored by Rep. Lloyd Doggett (D-TX) and Rep. Todd Young (R-IN).



Dems Versus Dems

A June 2013 Morning Consult poll and word cloud (see graphic) shows general dissatisfaction with Congressional Democrats. Obama and Obamacare do not garner the same negativity as Congress,  However, Democrat respondents used descriptions such as "inconsistent" and "a long way to go" while Republicans chose stronger responses such as "wrong" and "stupid." Among Democrats, Congressional Republicans are viewed as an impediment, while Republicans give them some slack. Independents were split.



Feds Fund Genome Mapping

The National Institutes of Health awarded $1.4 million to 23 and Me, a privately held business that maps individuals genomics. The grant goes toward a two-year venture that supports the companies' database and research engine. The goal is to build systems to facilitate data-sharing, resulting in a databank of information from over 400,000 individuals used to make health predictions.



Needed: A Culture of Care

Statistical claims that "85-90% of babies with Down syndrome are aborted" only reflect data gathered from the sub-group of women who elect to have pre-natal testing and who may be pre-disposed to terminate the pregnancy. Over the past few years, the number of children with Down syndrome has increased due to women opting out of the screening test. This author wants to create a culture that cares for individuals with Down Syndrome.



Sharing Your Data to "Transform"

Patients believe their medical records are solely for their care, but a new analysis suggests that Health Information Exchange (HIE) systems allow "predictive diagnosis and population health management." One analyst suggests that HIE will "transform the very nature of healthcare and planning, ushering in predictive analytics and coordinated care management." The federal government has provided more than $547 million to states to establish state HIEs.



It's Your Data and They Want It

John Halamka, a hospital CEO and a proponent of Health Information Exchanges (HIEs), wants patient data shared "across EHRs through an HIE," He says laws should not make data-sharing illegal and suggests concerned patients be allowed to opt out (dissent). The director of California's HIE wants government to set a framework that "allows unaffiliated organizations to trust each other for the purpose of sharing information." Patient consent is rarely discussed, only dissent is offiered.



Docs vs. Glocks

Wollschlaeger v. Scott, satirically titled "Docs v. Glocks," limits doctors' ability to as patients to discuss their weapon possession. Doctors feel the law violates their right to free speech and cite the questions as "a routine part of the effective practice of preventive medicine for many health care practitioners." The11th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled the law constitutional in 2011, but Florida doctors hope for a different verdict from the federal appeals court.




Quote of the Week:

 

"But frankly, he should never have said as much as he did, that if you like your current health care plan, you can keep it. That wasn't true. And you shouldn't lie to people. And they just lied to people. ... He should have said, 'Look, in some cases the health care plans that you've got are really inadequate, and in your own interests, we're going to change them,'" - Former U.S. Representative Barney Frank, Huffington Post, August 1, 2014.

 



 




Stat of the Week:

159 = number of security gaps found at information security programs at 10 Medicare contractors in Fiscal Year 2012, according to an HHS Inspector General Report issued on July 30, 2014.

 




News Release of the Week:

HHS Awards States $106 Million in Grants for Thinly Veiled Data Collection Initiative

ST. PAUL, Minn. - Through an Obamacare initiative, Health and Human Services recently announced that it will award $106.7 million in grants to 46 states to support an early childhood home visitation program.

HHS says the goal is to "ensure that young families have the option to participate in a program that promotes their children's healthy growth and development." But one leading patient privacy advocacy group says the project is actually a thinly veiled attempt to collect the private medical data of America's youngest residents.

Continue reading

 




Featured Health Freedom Minute:

Taking the Shine Off Obama's Spin
 

The Obama administration claims 8 million enrollees through
Healthcare.gov. First of all, no one has any idea if that number is
accurate. But second of all, other numbers take the shine off the
administrationʼs spin job. Iʼll share three.

Continue reading

Twila Brase broadcasts a daily, 60-second radio feature, Health Freedom Minute, which brings health care issues to light for the American public. Health Freedom Minute airs on the entire American Family Radio Network, with more than 150 stations nationwide in addition to Bott Radio Network with over 80 stations nationwide.

Click here to listen to this week's features.

Citizens' Council for Health Freedom
161 St. Anthony Avenue, Ste 923
St. Paul, MN 55103
Phone: 651.646.8935 • Fax: 651.646.0100
Email: info@cchfreedom.org
www.cchfreedom.org



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