By Julian Pecquet - 01/11/11 11:37 PM EST
Fiscal conservatives prepare for repeal battle: The powerful U.S. Chamber of Commerce called for a repeal of Democrats' healthcare reform law and then outlined specific issues it has with the legislation during the annual State of American Business address on Tuesday.
The speech comes as the White House has been trying to repair relations with the business community in the wake of Democrats' midterm losses. Chamber President and CEO Thomas Donohue predicted Tuesday that "the president will see value in making the constructive changes that are needed in the bill." http://bit.ly/fdjsaV
Separately, the National Taxpayers Union predicted changes to healthcare law: Vice President Pete Sepp said in a call Tuesday that once the dust settles from the healthcare reform repeal effort, the focus will quickly turn to several tax-related portions of the bill that President Obama might be willing to change. http://bit.ly/hJXNnu
Kaiser unveils annual 50-state Medicaid survey: More than half of U.S. states allowed more people to get on Medicaid in 2010 or made it easier for them to enroll, according to a new report, helping to prevent a steep increase in the number of uninsured Americans during the economic recession.
The report from the Kaiser Family Foundation credits the 2009 Recovery Act and last year's healthcare reform law for providing more funding to states while preventing them from dropping people from the rolls. Partly as a result, 14 states made it easier to enroll into Medicaid or the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), while 13 expanded eligibility. http://bit.ly/hrFfCt
Read the report here: http://bit.ly/fuXFzG
Abortions on the rise again: The abortion rate steadily declined between 1990 and 2005 but seems to be on the rise again, according to a new report from the Guttmacher Institute. http://bit.ly/fLzgRP
Small medical practices face tough time: A report by Practice Fusion finds that 41 percent of small medical practices report doing worse than last year, with operating costs and insurance reimbursement issues major sources of concern for most physicians. http://bit.ly/hbeoZd
Heritage puts human face on healthcare reform repeal: Taking a page from Democrats' playbook, the conservative Heritage Foundation unveils a new report showcasing "real people" raising concerns with the healthcare reform law. http://bit.ly/hDW3uN
On the agenda for Wednesday:
Institutes of Medicine tackle "essential health benefits": The IOM begins a three-day discussion on what should constitute essential benefits mandated under the healthcare reform law. The first day is closed to the public "to observe committee proceedings" but some sessions will be open on Thursday and Friday. http://bit.ly/igT4Ds
Read Kaiser Health News' story here: http://bit.ly/gO903Q
The IOM's Committee on Preventive Services for Women also meets Wednesday. http://bit.ly/eNKbbI
The Council for American Medical Innovation hosts a panel on "Medical Innovation at a Crossroads: Choosing the Path Ahead." http://bit.ly/ewNCHs
Around the Web:
Catholics United co-founder Chris Korzen asks in The Huffington
Post if the repeal vote is purely symbolic, why have such a divisive vote at all? http://huff.to/heiDRg
Hedge funds are blaming healthcare reform for premium hike, reports The New York Times. http://nyti.ms/hWHUX6
Maine healthcare advocates are pressing state leaders not to get on board a legal challenge, the Maine Public Broadcasting Network reports. http://bit.ly/fZDkpC
Ravens cornerback Dominique Foxworth warns that the NFL's healthcare benefits need to be overhauled if the league adopts an 18-game regular-season schedule, the Baltimore Sun reports: http://bit.ly/faxurq
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