President Donald Trump signed into law the FDA Reauthorization Act of 2017, which extends some user fee agreements that fund the Food and Drug Administration’s approval process for drugs and medical devices. The law also takes modest steps to address rising drug prices.
If President Donald Trump follows through on his threats to terminate key payments to insurers, health insurance premiums would rise 20 percent next year and the federal deficit would jump by $194 billion, according to an analysis by the Congressional Budget Office.
Starting the first week of September, the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee will launch a crunch-time push to shore up the Affordable Care Act’s individual marketplaces for next year.
The Trump administration said it would make key payments to insurers this month, despite threats from President Donald Trump to terminate them after Senate Republicans failed to pass a repeal of the Affordable Care Act. Governors and Democrats have been urging Trump to continue the payments because insurers have said they would hike premiums or exit the exchanges without them.
Centene Corp. has agreed to sell health plans in 14 Nevada counties that had been at risk of having no coverage options through the Affordable Care Act next year. The agreement leaves only two counties in the United States without Obamacare coverage options.
Google has acquired health-monitoring startup Senosis Health, in the internet giant’s latest foray into digital health. Founded by computer scientist Shwetak Patel, Senosis has developed apps that use enhanced cameras, accelerometers and microphones of modern-day smartphones as a new type of health care diagnostic tool.
The Congressional Budget Office plans to release a report this week on the estimated cost of ending cost-sharing reduction payments. Uncertainty over the administration’s commitment to making these payments has caused insurers to suggest premium increases and exit health care exchanges.
President Donald Trump blamed former President Barack Obama for not doing more to curb opioid abuse, but he offered few specific details for how he would confront the crisis. Trump later announced he is declaring the epidemic “a national emergency.”
Fourteen health organizations sent a joint letter to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) recommending ways to stabilize the individual insurance markets and reduce premiums. The group, led by the American Heart Association, recommended continuing cost-sharing reduction payments and outreach efforts.
To confront rising rates of opioid abuse, at least 17 states are placing tight restrictions on the number of powerful prescription painkillers doctors can prescribe. The moves have raised alarms among some physicians.