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Medicare data show contrast in generic, brand prescribing

The most-used medicines in Medicare's prescription drug program are generics, but the program spends the most on brand-name drugs, led by the heartburn treatment Nexium, according to an unprecedented release of government data on Thursday.

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Category: Health & Wellness, News Tags:
Doctors
Catherine Yeulet, ThinkStock
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Obama signs overhaul of how Medicare pays doctors

Ending years of last-minute fixes, President Barack Obama on Thursday signed legislation permanently changing how Medicare pays doctors, a rare bipartisan achievement by Democrats and Republicans.

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Category: Health & Wellness, News Tags:
Doctor
SORAPONG CHAIPANYA, ThinkStock
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Obama ready to sign bill revamping Medicare doctor fees

President Barack Obama said Wednesday he's ready to sign "good, bipartisan" legislation protecting physicians from steep cuts in Medicare reimbursements and bolstering health programs for children and the poor as Senate Democrats seemed to soften their opposition to the package.

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Doctor with female patient
Catherine Yeulet, ThinkStock
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Gov’t to overhaul Medicare payments to doctors, hospitals

Medicare will change the way it pays hospitals and doctors to reward quality over volume, the Obama administration said Monday, in a shift that officials hope will be a catalyst for the nation's $3-trillion health care system.

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Medicaid Administrator Marilyn Tavenner, shown here testifying on Capitol Hill in last September, has stepped down. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta, File)
Medicaid Administrator Marilyn Tavenner, shown here testifying on Capitol Hill in last September, has stepped down. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta, File)
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Medicare chief steps down, ran health care rollout

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Medicare's top administrator unexpectedly resigned Friday, becoming the latest casualty in the turmoil over the president's health care law, which is still struggling for acceptance even as millions benefit from expanded coverage.

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U.S Treasury Facility Prints Social Security Checks
Photo Illustration by William Thomas Cain, Getty Images
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Despite good news, benefit programs face long-term problems

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Despite some good news, Medicare and Social Security still face long-term financial problems as millions of baby boomers reach retirement. Social Security's disability program is already in crisis as it edges toward the brink of insolvency.

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Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell, center,  speaks at a news conference at the Treasury Department in Washington, Monday, July 28, 2014, to discuss the release of the annual Trustees Reports. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell, center, speaks at a news conference at the Treasury Department in Washington, Monday, July 28, 2014, to discuss the release of the annual Trustees Reports. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
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Medicare’s own health looking better, report says

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Medicare's financial future is looking brighter despite a growing wave of baby boomers reaching retirement.

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elderly couple
Zoomar RF, ThinkStock
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New Medicare Program Would Protect Taxpayers

A bill has been introduced that would strengthen the Medicare program and protect taxpayer dollars.

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A U.S. Department of Health and Services review board ruled Friday, May 30, in favor of Denee Mallon, above, a 74-year-old Army veteran, whose request to have Medicare pay for her genital reconstruction was denied two years ago. (AP Photo/Craig Fritz)
A U.S. Department of Health and Services review board ruled Friday, May 30, in favor of Denee Mallon, above, a 74-year-old Army veteran, whose request to have Medicare pay for her genital reconstruction was denied two years ago. (AP Photo/Craig Fritz)
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Medicare Coverage Ban on Sex-change Surgery Lifted

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Transgender people receiving Medicare may no longer be automatically denied coverage for sex reassignment surgeries, a U.S. Department of Health and Services review board ruled Friday in a groundbreaking decision that recognizes the procedures as a medically necessary and effective treatment for individuals who do not identify with their biological sex.

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NJ Delays Changes to Home Health Care Payments

A revamp of programs to make it easier for elderly New Jersey residents to get help paying for home health care has been delayed until summer.

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