Additional Certification Body Announced

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) recently announed InfoGard Laboratories, Inc. of San Luis Obispo, California as an ONC-Authorized Testing and Certification Body (ONC-ATCB).  This is the third ONC-ATCB authorized.  As noted in a previous post, the Certification Commission for Health Information Technology (CCHIT) and the Drummond Group were the initial organizations qualified to test and certify electronic health record (EHR) systems as capable of meeting the meaningful-use criteria of the federal health IT subsidy program established by economic stimulus.

ONC stated that additional certification bodies are under review.

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MACPAC Releases Report on Medicaid Managed Care

The Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission (MACPAC) released its June 2011 Report to the Congress: The Evolution of Managed Care in Medicaid. The Commission’s report provides an overview of Medicaid managed care, including information on populations enrolled, plan arrangements, payment policy, access and quality, as well as program accountability, integrity, and data.

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Capital Thinking Podcast

Given recent resignations and a death, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi needs 217 votes to pass the Senate bill. The whip count in the House remains close.  Congressman Joseph Cao, the only Republican who voted in favor of the House health care reform legislation, is not expected to lend his support to passage of the Senate bill. Representative Bart Stupak and other anti-abortion Democrats, who authored the language in the House package to prohibit individuals from using federal subsidies to purchase plans in the exchange that cover elective abortions, have been vocal that they will not support the Senate package. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius has suggested that the White House may strike a deal with the Congressman to address his concerns in a separate bill in exchange for support on the Senate bill. Although President Obama may be ready to move health care reform forward without Republican support, he must ensure that Congressional Leaders can rally Democrats.

White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said that the President wants the House to pass the Senate bill before March 18.  House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Henry Waxman, however, suggested that Congress could finish health care reform within the next two months. House and Senate Leadership had hoped to send a reconciliation bill to the Congressional Budget Office to be scored.

Meanwhile, last week, the Senate turned to a jobs package and tax extenders legislation, both which contain short-term fixes or extensions of expiring Medicare provisions. The Senate passed and the President signed into law H.R. 4691, the “Temporary Extension Act of 2010.” The legislation includes an extension of the Medicare physician fee fix as well as an extension of the therapy caps exceptions process through March 31, 2010.

When the Senate convenes today, it will resume consideration of the tax extenders package. The legislation is expected to pass this week with the Baucus substitute amendment, which extends the physician fee fix through the end of the year. The substitute amendment also includes a number of Medicare extenders that were included in the Senate-passed “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.”

Representative Charlie Rangel took a temporary leave of absence as the Chairman of House Ways and Means Committee as the House Ethics Committee ruled that he broke ethics rules by accepting trips to the Caribbean. An investigation into claims of tax evasion and failure to report income from rental properties continue.  Michigan Congressman Sandy Levin will serve as Acting Chairman.

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Best ED Products Reviews

The Vigaplus product is by far one of the best erectile dysfunction products on the market today. This specific erectile dysfunction product has been highly rated by many customers. Erectile issues can be caused by so many different things including lack of proper nutrition, certain disorders or diseases and much more. However, with Vigaplus you can change around your private life forever. When you are taking this pill it will only take minutes after taking it before your erection will be up and ready to go. Getting this erectile dysfunction product will be one of he best decisions that you have ever made in regards to your intimate life.

This product is the ultimate help that you will need in order to help you get and maintain an erection. There are so many ways that this product can help your erection. Not only will it help your erection but it will also increase your sex drive and the energy levels that you have during sex as well. If you purchase this product to help you get and maintain an erection you can be guaranteed that your partner will enjoy you more after you take this product than they ever had before.

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Do not let your erectile dysfunction get you down. If you are having any issues getting or maintaining an erection allow Vigaplus to help you with your erection right away. Do not wait any longer to get back to having an intimate life. You and your partner will be glad that you chose to purchase this erectile dysfunction product. Additionally, once you have tried out this amazing, top of the market product, you are never going to want to use another product to help you get and maintain an erection ever again. Give it a try today!

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House Action on Health Care Reform Repeal

Last night, the House of Representatives voted 245-189 to pass the the “Repealing the Job-Killing Health Care Law Act” (H.R. 2).  At this time, the Senate has no plans to take up consideration of the bill, which would be unlikely to pass and would almost certainly face a Presidential veto if it were to.

The House will next take up consideration of H.Res. 9, instructing House Committees to recommend measures to replace the reform law. Specifically, the resolution directs Committees to “proposing changes to existing law” that address many of their chief concerns with the health law including: provisions that spur economic growth and create jobs; lower health premiums; preserve patients’ ability to keep their health plan; provide people with pre-existing conditions access to coverage; reform medical malpractice; increase the number of insured; protect the doctor-patient relationship; provide States with more Medicaid flexibility; expand personal responsibility; prohibit taxpayer funding of abortions; eliminate waste; and do not accelerate the insolvency of entitlement programs.

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Tick Tock – Has Time Run Out for Health Reform?

During his State of the Union address, the President did not give any insight into the best path forward for moving comprehensive health care reform. Congress continues to mull over how to pass legislation, and reform advocates are holding out hope that Members can refocus and revive the debate. Meanwhile, it has become clear that creation of new jobs will be the President’s number one priority in 2010.

The New York Times reports that Democrats are considering splitting up the bill and moving smaller pieces separately but Politicoconfirms that option may not be a simple and expeditious process.

The Washington Post reports that Democrats are still contemplating on how to proceed but lawmakers remain steadfast in their commitment to passing legislation and maintain that reconciliation is still on the table.  We anticipate that Democratic leaders will continue to caucus over the next couple of weeks to work on developing a sustainable path forward.

In other health news, while the Democrats still maintain a filibuster proof majority before Republican Senator-elect Scott Brown is seated, the Senate managed to pass a resolution that increases the debt ceiling to $14.3 trillion, which greases the wheels for a potential five-year Medicare physician payment fix that would be exempt from the pay-as-you-go rules.  Congress is still required to pass legislation to stop the 21 percent cuts from going through on March 1, 2010.

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Capital Thinking Radio Show

CT_radio1 Join us this week on Capital Thinking this week as host Kevin O’Neill examines the political impact of the recent House approval of the most sweeping piece of social legislation in decades. John Jonas and Martha Kendrick provide strategic analysis of the bill and what to expect next.

Tune in every Thursday at NOON EST and 9:00 am PST on VoiceAmerica Business

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Still Going for Gold

In hopes of moving health care reform, President Obama has taken a more active role in the debate. Earlier this week, the President released his proposal for reform, which is mostly additive to or revisionist of the Senate bill. The President included several fraud and abuse provisions that were included in H.R. 3970, the “Medical Rights and Reform Act,” or H.R. 3400, the “Empowering Patients First Act.”

On Thursday, President Obama is convening a bipartisan summit with a goal of identifying compromises that will help to move health care reform legislation forward. Senate Republican Leadership has expressed disappointment in the President’s unwillingness to scrap the current health care reform bills and have suggested that an incremental approach to reform is more appropriate than comprehensive reform. The summit does not change the procedural options for moving reform legislation. Congress has two options: either move incremental reform bills or use reconciliation to pass comprehensive reform. President Obama will use the summit to build support for passage of health care reform, even if by reconciliation.

At this point, we expect Congress to move several health care provisions separate from health care reform, including a physician fee fix, repeal of the insurance antitrust exemption, and a package of health extenders and use reconciliation to pass comprehensive reform.

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State of the Union Talking Points from the White House

Rescue, Rebuild, Restore – A New Foundation for Prosperity

The President is going to talk directly to the American people about restoring security for middle class families after a lost decade of declining wages, eroding retirement security and escalating health care and tuition costs. The President will talk to the American people about steps we need to take to build on the work we did this past year to bring the economy back from the brink of a depression. While the worst of the economic crisis has passed, for too many American families and businesses the wreckage remains.

He’ll call on Congress to pass a jobs bill to jumpstart private sector job creation with:

  • Investments in small businesses;
  • Investments in Green Jobs and clean energy;
  • Investments in road, bridge, rail and port projects; and
  • Policies to spur more exports of American manufactured products.

The President will talk to the American people about meeting the challenges that have hurt middle class families, and those who aspire to it, by building a New Foundation of prosperity for American families and businesses.

He’ll call on Congress to pass Education reforms that transform families and strengthen the country;

He’ll call on Congress to pass meaningful Financial Reforms that hold Wall Street accountable, makes sure no bank is ever too big to fail and provide clear rules of the road that give the American consumer the clear information they need to make financial decisions;

He’ll call on Congress to enact Energy Reform that creates the jobs of tomorrow, increases our energy independence and reduces pollution;

He’ll call on Congress to enact fiscal reform that recognizes that the deficits and debt exploded the last decade before the President took office.

He’ll propose measures to deal with the costs of bringing the economy back from the brink of a depression and call on Congress to engage in the bi-partisan work required to address the debt that was accumulated in the last decade.

He’ll ask Congress, Democrats and Republicans, to continue the work on health reform.

He’ll remind all members that premiums will continue to rise; businesses will continue to drop coverage and more families will deal with insurance company abuses if we don’t act.

The President will also speak directly to the American people and to Congress about changing the way business is done in Washington so that the American people know that their interests always come before the special interests.

He’ll call for more transparency so that the public is always aware of what’s being done on their behalf. The President will talk about his efforts to better protect the American people. After inheriting two wars and a growing terrorist threat, he will review the steps that he has taken to increase the pressure on al Qaeda, and refocus on Afghanistan. He will discuss the progress made in carrying out his plan to end the war in Iraq. And he will announce a new plan to protect the American people from bio-terrorism and infectious disease.

The President has renewed America’s alliances and standing in the world. He will preview the progress that we are poised to make as we near completion of a landmark arms control agreement with Russia, and prepare to host a Nuclear Security Summit in April that will rally the world behind the goal of securing all loose nuclear materials. He will also speak about America’s leadership on issues like global economic growth, climate change, and human rights.

For over a decade, American families have been working harder and falling further behind. As college become less affordable; retirement savings become less secure; home values plummet; health insurance premiums and co-pays eat into wages and the cost of living explodes, the standard of living for American families continues to decline.

While they meet their responsibilities and play by the rules, they have seen the special interests and those with political access in Washington get farther and farther ahead. Rather than seeing policies that encourage responsible behavior, American families have too often seen Washington reward irresponsibility while passing on debt to future generations.

The President will talk about the need for change that the American people want and expect. For a decade, American families and businesses have experienced an erosion of the economic security that has been at the core of our prosperity. Tonight the President will lay out his vision on what steps are required to restore that security and how Washington should do its work in a way that reflects the best of our people and our democracy.

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Excellent Benefits of Chlorogen 800

As fad diets come and go, natural products seem to be the one constant factor that remain. One such product, the green coffee bean diet, has been debated, reviewed, and seems to have no negative testimonials. The green coffee bean has chlorogenic acid, which promotes fat burning by reducing the conversion of fat from carbohydrates.  Some studies have suggested that taking this product can cause a person to lose an average of 17 LBS in 22 weeks, without a change in lifestyle. No dieting and no exercise? And still lose weight? This study group took three capsules of product, one more than the recommended two a day.

chlorogen 800

One green coffee bean supplement distributor, Chlorogen 800, seems to have a high quality, easy to use, proven by their customers, Green Coffee Bean diet supplement. Using non-roasted coffee beans, thus preserving the chlorogen acid, and  maintaining a quality 50% chlorogenic acid in their supplement, Chlorogen 800 is 100% natural, pure as proven by the GCE label, easy to use, and has other health benefits as well as promoting weight loss.

Although a healthy diet, a moderate lifestyle and exercise is promoted by the company, Chlorogen 800 has been proven to cause weight loss even without lifestyle changes. When taking the product, we may expect to experience weight loss, a balance in blood sugar, as well as feeling less hungry and satiated by the supplement. Added bonuses include a heightened sexual awareness, youthfulness, and a sense of well being.

With an iron clad 60 day money back guarantee, non-addictive, no fillers, no additives, no dilutes and no side effects , we may expect this product to be  safe, easy to use, and  having long term results in helping to maintain weight and a healthier lifestyle.

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