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Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

By Claire Thayer, December 9, 2016

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week:

1. 5 quick ways a new HHS secretary could change health policy
Kaiser Health News reports: Prospective Health and Human Services secretary Tom Price, currently the chairman of the House Budget Committee, brings a distinctive to-do list to the agency. And, if confirmed by the Senate, he will have tremendous independent power to get things done.
Kaiser Health News via the Washington Post, December 9, 2016

2. HHS Chief Warns Senate Democrats of ‘Chaos’ Under ACA Repeal
Morning Consult reports: The nation’s top health official spoke with Senate Democrats Thursday about the repeal of the Affordable Care Act, warning that undoing the law without having a replacement ready could be disastrous.
Morning Consult, December 8, 2016

3. These drug price hikes cost taxpayers millions
Stat News reports: Drugs to treat cancer, high blood pressure, and seizures experienced large price spikes in 2015, costing taxpayers millions of dollars in added Medicare spending, according to new data released by the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
StatNews, December 8, 2016

4. Health Insurers List Demands if Affordable Care Act Is Killed
The NY Times reports: The nation’s health insurers, resigned to the idea that Republicans will repeal the Affordable Care Act, on Tuesday publicly outlined for the first time what the industry wants to stay in the state marketplaces, which have provided millions of Americans with insurance under the law.
New York Times, December 6, 2016

5. Insurers’ Flawed Directories Leave Patients Scrambling For In-Network Doctors
Kaiser Health News reports: Penny Gentieu did not intend to phone 308 physicians in six different insurance plans when she started shopping for 2017 health coverage.
Kaiser Health News, December 5, 2016

These and more weekly news items on the business of healthcare are featured in the MCOL Weekend edition, along with the MCOL Tidbits, and more, for MCOL Premium level members.

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