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What We're Reading: Criticizing the Bipartisan Deal; Restasis Patents; Hospitals and the Homeless


House GOP Leader Against ACA Insurer Payments

The same day a bipartisan deal was announced to extend payments to insurers under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), a GOP leader in the House spoke out against the deal. According to The Hill, Republican Study Committee Chairman Mark Walker, R-North Carolina, criticized the deal for helping to save the health law when Republicans were trying to dismantle it. The bipartisan proposal would extend payments for 2 years and was crafted in response to President Donald Trump's announcement that he would cease sending the payments to insurers.

Judge Invalidates Restasis Patents

Allergan attempted to protect its patents for the dry eye treatment Restasis by transferring it to a Native American tribe—a ploy which hasn’t worked. A judge in Texas has ruled the patents were invalid, which opens the door to generics, reported The New York Times. The company tried to protect the patents from a separate challenge by paying a tribe to take the patents, which would be leased back to the drug maker. Allergan plans to appeal the decision.

Hospitals Look to House the Homeless

In an attempt to reduce unnecessary emergency department visits and wasteful spending, hospitals across the country are taking steps to house the homeless. California Healthline reported that the housing programs place the homeless into apartments, pay rent for a few months, and set the individuals up with social workers. Hospitals have put between $75 million to $100 million into these initiatives over the last few years. In some instances, the individuals placed in temporary housing by the hospital can become eligible for permanent housing.

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