Thursday, November 17, 2011

Thursday Themes

I'm about out of steam, but before I collapse, here's the news:

The House passed the same two pieces of the jobs bill that the Senate previously passed -- one eliminating 3% withholding from government contractors and one providing jobs for veterans.

The GOP is struggling over whether and how much to compromise on tax increases. Supercommittee members have realized they have to give on this issue, but not everyone in the party agrees. Still, GOP co-chair Hensarling says he's willing to consider new Dem proposals. However, he also says that the Dems have to accept big cuts to Medicare. The Dems say the GOP has to drop the demand for reducing the tax rate on the wealthiest Americans. There's also lots of finger-pointing on who's to blame for the current impasse.

You know the Supreme Court agreed to hear the health reform case. Some are surprised and troubled by their decision to hear not only the individual mandate, but also the Medicaid expansion. Does this signal that they might overturn it? Meanwhile, many politicians running for office in 2012 are going to be affected by whatever the Court does.

Sort of complicated lawsuit alleges that Medicare HMOs moved patients into hospice even if they weren't terminal just to get more money out of Medicare. The key is that at least one executive worked for both the HMO and the hospice.

A new study shows health insurance premiums rising in every state.

Baby boomers don't have living wills. Do you? You should.

Some companies are starting to charge more for health insurance for employees who smoke or are obese.

Oregon tested the use of iPads to assist disabled people to vote.

Here's another of those quizzes from the NY Times. This time, the patient has sudden onset, right-sided abdominal pain. Guess what he has. I love these.

Diabetics facing employment discrimination. In this case, bus drivers who were suspended even though they are not insulin dependent and pose no particular risk.

Women are more likely to have broken heart syndrome than men.

More than 20% of Americans are on medication for anxiety or depression.

And there you go. Have a great day! Jennifer

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