OVERNIGHT HEALTH: GOP fast-tracks bill to fund ObamaCare program

Markup of the Pitts bill (H.R. 1549) is scheduled for Wednesday. Read more about the House GOP's interest in the PCIP at Healthwatch.

Arkansas moves ahead: The Arkansas House passed the state's controversial plan Tuesday, after some last-minute lobbying that followed a failed vote on Monday. Arkansas wants to use the funding from ObamaCare's Medicaid expansion to move poor residents into private coverage through the state's insurance exchange (also a part of the healthcare reform law). It's an unorthodox approach that has piqued the interest of several conservative states, who are largely waiting to see how things work out for Arkansas. With the legislature now on board, all eyes will be on the negotiations between Gov. Mike Beebe and the Obama administration.

Bloomberg has the story on Tuesday's vote and the overnight lobbying that helped change lawmakers' minds.

IT troubles: The push for electronic medical records isn't going so well, according to a new report from Senate Republicans. The report, led by Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), details flaws in the implementation of a 2009 law to boost the use of electronic records. The program appears to have increased healthcare costs rather than reducing them, the report says, and there are major hurdles standing in the way of a seamless, interoperable system. Healthwatch has the story here, and you can read a copy of the report here.

Profits from pain: Hospitals make roughly $30,000 more from patients who suffer at least one complication than they do from patients whose procedures go smoothly, according to a study published Tuesday in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Surgical complications not only boost hospitals' revenues, but also their profit margins, the study found. Although complications usually require additional treatments, hospitals' profit margins tripled when a privately insured patient suffered a complication. 

Healthwatch has more.

Wednesday's agenda

The House Energy and Commerce Committee will mark up a bill to strengthen ObamaCare's Pre-Existing Conditions Insurance Plan.

The House Small Business Committee will hold a hearing on how the healthcare is affecting small businesses.

State by state

Medicaid expansion in Ohio could be back in play

Talks continue on possible Medicaid expansion in Tennessee

Missouri Gov. Nixon rallies with Medicaid supporters

Lobbying registrations

J M Burkman & Associates / Chapman House

Mehlman Vogel Castagnetti / CenseoHealth

Policy Development Group / Scottsdale Healthcare

Troutman Sanders Public Affairs Group / Corizon Health

Reading list

Health law could overwhelm addiction services

US court finds Bayer contraceptive patent claims invalid

Circumcision study supports HIV theory

What you might have missed on Healthwatch

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Breast cancer claims expanded for 9/11 survivors

GOP senators raise concerns with push for electronic medical records

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Sam Baker: sbaker@thehill.com / 202-628-8351

Elise Viebeck: eviebeck@thehill.com / 202-628-8523

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