Commentary: Lowering the Cost of Prescription Medicines for Seniors Is Not Impossible

Earlier this year James Payne, a 73-year-old retired attorney in Utah, was so fed up with the high cost of a blood thinner medication he takes, he researched prices in Canada, where he found it was cheaper.

“Under Medicare, I am now paying $225 for a three-month supply,” Payne explained. “That’s $25 more than I was paying last year. Under my employer’s insurance I was only paying $20.” Payne says he is not sure why the costs are so much higher and continue to climb under Medicare, but he thinks there must be ways to make life-saving medications more affordable.

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Medicare to Ratchet up Enforcement Against Nursing Homes as Coronavirus Fatalities Exceed 25,000

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) unveiled enhanced enforcement actions on Monday against nursing homes after preliminary federal data shows that at least 25,923 nursing home residents across the country have died from coronavirus.

“This data, and anecdotal reports across the country, clearly show that nursing homes have been devastated by the virus,” CMS Administrator Seema Verma and Centers for Disease Control Director Robert Redfield wrote in a letter to U.S. governors on Sunday.

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Franklin-Based Clinic Settles Allegations of Fraud with the Feds

The Franklin-based Rinova The Wellness Group, PC has settled the federal government’s allegations that Medicare overpaid the company for claims that were non-payable due to fraudulent misrepresentations.

This, according to a press release the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Tennessee released this week.

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Crom Carmichael: Democrats Want to Blame the Coronavirus’s Death Toll and Economic Problems Caused by the Virus on Trump

Friday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast live from Music Row on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – Leahy was joined on the newsmakers line by the original all-star panelist Crom Carmichael.

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Retired Ohio Public Workers Receive Massive Cuts to Health Care Benefits Starting in 2022

Following a year in which stock markets posted healthy gains, the organization running Ohio’s public employee benefits is cutting back — a lot.

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State Sen. Dickerson, Others in Pain Management Business Sued By United States, Tennessee for Allegedly Committing $25M in Medicare, TennCare Fraud

  State Sen. Steven Dickerson (R-TN-20) is among those being sued by the federal government and Tennessee over alleged Medicare and TennCare fraud totaling at least $25 million. The United States and Tennessee on Monday filed a consolidated complaint in intervention alleging violations of the False Claims Act and the…

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Rep. Green Introduces Bill to Give Rural Hospitals More Flexibility

  U.S. Reps. Dr. Mark Green (R-TN-07) and Bennie Thompson (D-MS-02) on Thursday introduced a new bipartisan bill to boost rural hospitals, Green said in a press release. The Rural Health Care Access Act of 2019 would repeal what Green called an arcane rule – “the 35-mile rule” – that…

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Trump Administration Ends Unions ‘Skimming’ $100 Million a Year from Medicaid

by Bethany Blankley   A final rule change has been implemented by the Trump administration to ensure that Medicaid providers receive complete payments as required by law. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released the Medicaid Provider Reassignment Regulation…

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Jury Convicts Comprehensive Pain Specialists’ John Davis in $4M Medicare Kickback Scheme

A federal jury in Nashville found the former CEO of a closed Tennessee pain management company guilty for his alleged role in a $4 million Medicare claim kickback scheme, U.S. Attorney Don Cochran for the Middle District of Tennessee said in a press release. John Davis, 41, of Franklin, the…

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Federal Agency Approves Ohio Work Requirement for Medicaid

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services approved Ohio’s work rules for “able-bodied” recipients of Medicare Friday. Obamacare included a requirement that all 50 states expand Medicare eligibility to cover every individual whose income was up to 133 percent of the poverty line by January 1, 2014. In 2012, in a…

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Three Doctors in Congress Diagnose the Problems with ‘Medicare for All’

by Rob Bluey   Few issues have animated conservatives as much as Obamacare. But there’s a new threat on the horizon. It’s called Medicare for All – and it would be a massive government takeover of your health care. The Daily Signal spoke with three medical doctors who are serving…

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Nine Years After Obamacare Passed, Agency Finds Numbers Were Wildly Off

by Jarrett Stepman   Democrats defeated Republicans in the Obamacare repeal fight by warning that 22 million Americans would be thrown off their health insurance. They pointed to data leaked from the Congressional Budget Office. Well, it turns out that data was completely wrong. According to a report by the…

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Missouri Federal Grand Jury Indicts 14 in Home Health Care Scam

A fraud scheme perpetrated on taxpayer-funded Medicare and Medicaid began to unravel with an anonymous tip alerting officials “that some Iraqis were fraudulently receiving home care services,” says a St. Louis Post-Dispatch report from earlier this month. Investigators examined billing records from several home health care companies that provide services to the…

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Incoming Members of Congress Want Medicare for All

Ocasio

by Evie Fordham   The House Medicare for All Caucus could count some new members when the 116th Congress convenes in January, although progressive candidates on the whole had a less than stellar performance on Election Day Tuesday. Democratic Rep.-elects Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York and Deb Haaland of New…

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Dr. Mark Green Commentary: Liability Reform a Major Area for Healthcare Savings

by State Senator Dr. Mark Green (R-Clarksville)   In my third and final op-ed on the healthcare crisis facing America, I’ll discuss the last major problem causing the crisis as well as a solution to address it. You can read part one here, and part two here. Liability reform is…

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Dr. Mark Green Commentary: ‘Cost Shifting’ Is a Major Contributor to the Healthcare Crisis Today

Mark Green FRC endorsement

by State Senator Dr. Mark Green (R-Clarksville)   The healthcare crisis in America is rightly one of the top issues on voters’ minds this election cycle. Unfortunately, missing from all the political rhetoric from most candidates is what is actually causing it. This is my second article in a three-part…

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Letter to the Editor: The Way to Lower Healthcare Costs Is to Support and Elect Candidates Who Will Apply Free Market Principles

doc nurse senior patient

Dear Tennessee Star, During the U.S. Senate debate I was glad to see Congressman Marsha Blackburn speak out against single payer healthcare. Being in the healthcare industry professionally since 1980 and now as a health consultant focused on health care legislation and helping companies and individuals navigate health care costs,…

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Bredesen’s Socialized Healthcare Plan Endangers Insurance, Medicare, Ad Says

Senate Leadership Fund on Tuesday launched a new advertising campaign discussing U.S. Senate candidate Phil Bredesen’s support of single-payer health care, saying it “threatens our healthcare.” The $1.2 million buy will run statewide on a combination of broadcast and cable television, radio and digital.  It is available to watch here. Bredesen,…

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Republican Dave Joyce Releases Bizarre Campaign Ad Distancing Himself from Trump

David Joyce

In a risky political move, Rep. Dave Joyce recently tried to distance himself from President Trump in a congressional district that the president won by 12 percentage points in the 2016 Election. Joyce, who is seeking reelection in Ohio’s 14th Congressional District, recently released an ad in which he touts…

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How Medicare’s Private Plans Surpass the Traditional Program

doc nurse senior patient

by Dr. Kevin Pham and Robert E. Moffit   Medicare Advantage, a system of competing private health plans, is surpassing the traditional Medicare fee-for-service program in delivering high quality, cost-effective medical care for senior and disabled citizens. The prominent research firm Avalere recently published a major study showing that Medicare Advantage generally outperformed traditional Medicare. This was especially so in caring for the most challenging patients who…

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President Trump Moves to Protect Home Care Workers from Union Shakedown

senior citizen health care

By Richard McCarty   The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, a part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, has proposed rolling back an Obama-Era regulation that allowed union dues to be deducted from Medicaid checks. If the proposed regulation takes effect, only deductions specifically allowed by law,…

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Feds Freeze ‘Obamacare’ Payments; Premiums Likely to Rise

Obamacare

The Trump administration said Saturday it’s freezing payments under an “Obamacare” program that protects insurers with sicker patients from financial losses, a move expected to add to premium increases next year. At stake are billions in payments to insurers with sicker customers. In a weekend announcement, the Centers for Medicare…

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Another Government-Run Website Is Failing, and It’s Not HealthCare.gov

Medicare plan finder

by Joel White   Another government website is shortchanging consumers with inaccurate information, enrollment details presented in confusing Washington-speak, the unavailability of human support, and no easy way to search for doctors covered under your plan. No, I’m not talking about HealthCare.gov—though its shortcomings are well-documented—but rather, its older, clumsier…

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Dr. Bryan Merrick Makes His Case To Top Federal Officials for Reinstatement into Medicare System

Dr. Bryan Merrick and his attorney Roy Herron met in Baltimore on Thursday with top federal officials at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the part of the Department of Health and Human Services responsible for administering the Medicare program, to make the case for the reinstatement of…

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West Tennessee Doctor Dropped by Medicare a Caring Man Who Would Never Cheat the System, Supporters Say

Five years ago, Janice Lowery of West Tennessee moved to another town, which left her a greater distance away from the doctor she had been going to for more than a decade. But she wasn’t about to look for another doctor, even though it would not have been hard to…

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Supporters of West Tennessee Doctor Frustrated With U.S. Rep. David Kustoff in Medicare Billing Case

Supporters of a beloved rural West Tennessee doctor they say is falsely accused of Medicare fraud are frustrated with the lack of response they are getting from U.S. Rep. David Kustoff (R-TN-8), whom they have turned to for help. Dr. Bryan Merrick of the McKenzie Medical Center lost his Medicare reimbursement…

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