Relevant and even prescient commentary on news, politics and the economy.

ACOs Did Not Cut Costs As Planned. It is Time to Stop the Experiment

Accountable Care Organizations don’t cut costs. It’s time to stop the managed care experiment, STAT, Kip Sullivan and James G. Kahn August 23, 2021 Kip Sullivan is a member of the advisory board of Health Care for All Minnesota. James G. Kahn is emeritus professor of health policy at the University of California San Francisco. For the last […]

Medicare Advantage and Medicare Issues

Why the hell would I go back to 2019 and cite a Nancy Altman complaint about Trump’s Executive Order? Some Introduction There were already issues with Medicare Advantage in $billions of over charges as Ms. Altman cites in her commentary. Secondly, Medicare Advantage is not “single payer” like Medicare (even without creating hospital budgets, setting […]

Forcing People Out of Traditional Medicare and into Medicare Advantage.

This was always the plan? The plan did not include forcing people out of traditional Medicare and into Medicare Advantage. No mistake on the date on this Copied and Pasted Angry Bear post from almost two years ago. Nancy Alt, Andrew Sprung, and Angry Bear were sounding the alarm in 2019 about trump’s move to […]

Medicare Could Use the VA’s Negotiation Results on Insulins and Other Drugs

VA-Like Negotiations on Insulin Prices Could Save Medicare Billions, MedPage Today, Zeena Nackerdien, February 21, 2020 I am going to dispense with the reasoning dissing the increased pricing of Insulin and go straight to a pricing strategy. Suffice it to say, the various versions developed of Insulin do not justify the pricing increases seen today. […]

Bargaining power, progressive maximalism, and Medicare for All

The HuffPo has reported on a minor dust-up between Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez over the politics of Medicare for All (see here, here, here, also Paul Waldman here).  The tl;dr summary is that AOC suggested that it is good politics for Sanders to insist on MFA, because this will give him more leverage in […]

Progressive idealism and Medicare For All

I have suggested (here and here) that idealism is leading progressives astray.  Idealism leads progressives to ignore the political opposition that their proposals will encounter, and the need to win over reluctant allies through policy design, messaging, and – yes – compromise. A clear example of the pitfalls of progressive idealism is provided by the […]

Rep Jayapal and Sen Sanders Have Introduced Medicare For All Bills: Part 2

Part 2 discusses why we must have the government issue payments to hospitals, clinics, etc. and also set the budgets for hospitals and this is how they are paid rather than billing multiple insurers and also patients. There is also only one payer. The later part is what I have been pounding on repeatedly. Forget […]

Something to keep in Mind when you enroll in Medicare Advantage Plans

It is not a dirty or hidden little secret. Insurance companies offering MA plans do not tell you that once you are in their plan, you are there potentially forever. Returning to traditional Medicare is ok but, getting a Medigap Plans to supplement the gap may lead to rejection or much higher premiums if you […]

Medicare for All

Medicare for All The abstract for “Does Medicare Coverage Improve Cancer Detection and Mortality Outcomes?” by Rebecca Mary Myerson, Reginald Tucker-Seeley, Dana Goldman and Darius N. Lakdawalla: Medicare is the largest government insurance program in the United States, providing coverage for over 60 million people in 2018. This paper analyzes the effects of Medicare insurance on health for a group […]