BOOK CLUB — The Right Price: A Value-Based Prescription for Drug Costs

For your summer reading. The Right Price: A Value-Based Prescription for Drug Costs offers the best explanation I’ve found of how drug costs are set, and how they should be. Using real-life patient stories, the authors give a balanced and comprehensive look at fair and reasonable pricing for a product that epitomizes market failure. The…

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JAMA highlights CT bill to limit extreme drug price increases

A recent JAMA article highlights bills to reduce drug price increases across states, including Connecticut’s bill. The bills call for clawing back 80% of drug price increases over inflation plus 2% — a healthy profit that many industries would happily welcome. Other states also considering bills include Massachusetts, Maine, Washington, and Hawaii; more are expected…

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CTNJ: OP-ED | Drug Affordability Requires Limits On Price Gouging

Jay Gironimi has cystic fibrosis and he is grateful for the drugs that help him live. But he disagrees with the Epilepsy Foundation’s opinion piece that defends extreme drug price hikes. “While the drugs are saving lives today, the profit margins are slowly tanking the entire US healthcare system.” Read more

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Response: Lobbyist uses seniors and people with disabilities to protect drug company profits

Reading William Smith’s CT Mirror opinion, I was worried that my state had passed draconian laws that were harming the health of seniors and people with disabilities. Thankfully, that isn’t the case. Our anti-discrimination laws are still in place and functioning. . . . True discrimination against seniors and people with disabilities happens every day…

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CTNJ Opinion: Remember Public Health’s Value After COVID Is Gone

The COVID-19 pandemic has focused a bright light on the weakness of the U.S. public health system. Countries with strong public health systems fared much better in controlling the virus’ spread. America used to have a strong public health system. From 1900 to 2000, life expectancy rose by 30 years. Contrary to public opinion, it…

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Governor’s consultant report recommendations for Medicaid savings are baseless

It’s not in the headlines but the biggest source of potential savings, $200 million, proposed by the Governor’s controversial report from Boston Consulting Group (BCG) to save money in state government to  is to go back to failed Medicaid financial risk models. There are two problems with the proposal. First, the financial risk models don’t…

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HUSKY COVID update – new enrollments lag, lots of money to providers, and telehealth is very popular

At Friday’s Medicaid Council meeting, we learned that while new HUSKY applications recovered last fall from its drop last spring, they fell again sharply this January and February. The reasons for the volatility during a serious recession are unclear. DSS focused on how HUSKY has responded to the COVID pandemic. Now covering over a million…

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CTNJ Op-Ed – Drug Innovation Argument Cuts Both Ways

In his recent op-ed, John Burkhardt of Pfizer misses important points when he asserts that the governor’s proposed tax on excessive prescription drug price increases will harm innovation and jobs in Connecticut. He ignores that rising drug prices are making health insurance unaffordable. Overpriced drugs inhibit other innovation and job growth across Connecticut’s economy. He…

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CT ranks 5th among states in Medicaid coverage, 2nd in quality

COVID has emphasized the importance of a strong, healthy Medicaid program for states. A new analysis by WalletHub ranks Connecticut fifth among states in 2021 Medicaid coverage. Rather than just using the percentage of state residents with Medicaid coverage, the ranking included quality, spending, as well as eligibility and enrollment. We ranked 2nd in quality…

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Cost Cap finds hospital system costs driving healthcare spending, but we knew that

Download the report In a surprise to no one, the first analysis by the Cost Cap project finds that inpatient and outpatient hospital services are a main driver of rising healthcare spending in Connecticut. Hospital and drug costs have been identified in multiple studies as the main drivers of rising health costs in our state.…

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