Immuno-Oncology Getting Closer to Being Personalized: Nature Study
The Nature letter published results showing that the monoclonal antibody targeting PD-1 had antitumor activity, but more importantly, the response was greater in patients overexpressing the PD-L1 receptor, thereby opening the doors for targeted therapy.
HHS Partners With Nation’s Largest Pharmacies to Promote Health Insurance Marketplace
HHS is collaborating with the nation’s largest pharmacies to encourage enrollment through the Health Insurance Marketplace at thousands of locations across the country.
AbbVie’s Hepatitis C Drug Could Put Cost Pressure on Sovaldi, Harvoni
Gilead Sciences’ hepatitis C drugs Sovaldi and Harvoni are the poster children for out-of-control drug costs, but competition from AbbVie's drug may place downward pressure on these prices.
Single-Payer Healthcare System Suffers Setback In Vermont
Single-payer health insurance—the only coverage option less popular among conservatives than Obamacare—suffered a setback last week, and it could be fatal.
AJMC Panelists Agree ACA, Parity Law Bring Progress in Mental Health Care, But There’s Still a Long Way to Go
The Affordable Care Act and a federal parity law have already helped persons with mental illness get access to proper care. But a leading advocate, a medical director for Cigna, and a psychiatrist who has studied innovative care delivery models say more can be done to improve screening, to ensure the correct diagnosis, and to provide better access to services.
Medicare’s Measure for Readmissions Fails to Identify Excellence and Improvement
San Diego County is doing much better than the national average at reducing readmissions to hospitals, yet nearly all their eligible hospitals are being penalized by Medicare’s hospital readmissions penalty program.
Reimbursement Reform Successfully Reduced Preventable Conditions
Researchers at Stanford University found that when CMS stopped paying for 2 preventable, hospital-acquired conditions in particular, the incidence of the conditions dropped 35% in the Medicare population.
Remaining Gaps Between Patient and Provider Outlook on Healthcare
Consumers, administrators, primary care physicians and specialists all agree: they do not think that the healthcare system is on the right track, according to a study from Booz Allen Hamilton and Ipsos Public Affairs.
Marketplace Premiums, Deductibles Flat Year Over Year
Marketplace health insurance premiums across the nation did not increase from 2014 to 2015. However, while the overall costs were flat, some states did see substantial average premium increases, which were offset by declines in other states.
FDA to Lift Ban on Gay, Bisexual Men Who Want to Donate Blood
The FDA will recommend in 2015 to lift the lifetime ban on blood donations from gay and bisexual men. However, the agency will keep in place a one-year ban after homosexual activity.
Director of the Center for Medicaid and CHIP Services to Step Down
The Obama administration’s top Medicaid official, who negotiated tough terms with states seeking to expand the program under the health law, is stepping down.
Anthem Acquires Managed Care Company in Florida
Anthem, Inc, increased its managed care footprint in the state of Florida. On Monday, the company has entered into an agreement to acquire Simply Healthcare Holdings, Inc.
Patients Withhold Clinically Sensitive Information Given the Chance
Nearly half of the patients who had access to electronic medical records withheld clinically sensitive information from some or all of their healthcare providers, according to a new study.
Reducing Costs, Serious Illnesses for Chronically Ill Children
Comprehensive care compared with usual care for high-risk children with chronic illness reduced total hospital and clinic costs as well as illnesses, according to a new study in JAMA.
Report Highlights Gaps in Nation’s Ability to Respond to Disease Outbreaks
The Ebola outbreak exposed some serious gaps in the nation’s ability to manage severe infectious disease threats with half of the country scoring low on key indicators related to preventing, detecting, diagnosing, and responding to outbreaks.
Supreme Court Sets March 4 as Date to Hear Challenge to ACA Subsidies
The most important case since the Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act will determine the law's ability to function in states without their own exchanges.
AJMC Takes an Early Glimpse Into ACO Contracts
Accountable care organizations (ACOs) are still a new creature in the world of managed care, and not all are alike. As the authors of a new comparative analysis in The American Journal of Managed Care outline, Medicare contracts dominate the ACO landscape, with only half of these entities having a contract with a private payer.
ASCO Releases Guidelines to Improve Patient Awareness and Participation in Phase I Trials
The American Society of Clinical Oncology called for greater access to and education about phase I clinical trials, the first-in-human studies of new agents designed to fight cancer.
Lanreotide Approved for Gastroenteropancreatic Neuroendocrine Tumors
The approval was based on the results of a clinical trial that demonstrated improved PFS in patients on lanreotide. While the median PFS in the placebo arm was 16 months, patients in the lanreotide arm had not yet reached median PFS at the time of analysis, and it was anticipated to extend beyond 22 months.
One-Fifth of the Population Spreads 80% of Certain Infectious Diseases
Superspreaders, who account for roughly 20% of the population, are more contagious than others and transmit about 80% of certain diseases, The Wall Street Journal reports.
FDA 2014 Approvals Outpace Those of 2013
The FDA offered up an early retrospective of the 2014 year of approvals Friday with a rundown the regulator feels pretty good about.
Physician Dispensing Associated With Unnecessary Prescribing Of Opioids
A new study from the Workers Compensation Research Institute found evidence that physician dispensing encouraged some physicians to unnecessarily prescribe strong opioids.
Hepatitis C Patients Get Lost in the Healthcare System
A new study in Hepatology highlights the need to raise awareness among healthcare professionals and at-risk populations about appropriate hepatitis C testing, referral, support, and care.
Push to Expand Medicaid to Begin Again in Virginia
Although Virginia Gov Terry McAuliffe failed to pass a Medicaid expansion plan during his first year in office, the governor's health secretary has indicated that the fight will begin again.
Bayer's Xofigo Gains NICE Approval
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence has issued draft guidelines on using the drug in prostate cancer patients.