Health Care

House committee looks to set February deadline for health care financing plan, adds consequence

StockXchng image of stethoscope and calculator.

The proposal would freeze the administration’s funding to plan and implement the transition to a universal health care program if it doesn’t present lawmakers with public financing details by February.

Pathways Vermont seeks designated agency status, meets resistance from other mental health programs

Hilary Melton, executive director of Pathways Vermont, testifies Monday, April 14, 2014, at a public hearing before Department of Mental Health officials. Photo by Morgan True/VTDigger

Pathways will lose $800,000 when federal grants run out. The nonprofit is applying for Medicaid funding, which would require a state match of $350,000.

Vermont to launch global budget pilot for hospitals

Central Vermont Medical Center's Emergency Room. Photo by Roger Crowley/for VTDigger

Rutland Regional wants to test system that pays for treating an entire hospital population rather than one service at a time.

House lawmakers look to take on prescription drug companies in push for transparency

Prescription drugs. Photo by Alissa Walker

The proposal would require pharmacy benefits managers to report an aggregate dollar amount they pocket for all claims to health insurers.

State auditor to take on Vermont Health Connect rollout

Vermont State Auditor Doug Hoffer.

The auditor also exploring a partnership with federal auditors from the Health and Human Services Inspector General’s Office.

Senate gives preliminary approval to Lyme disease legislation

The black-legged tick carries Lyme disease. Creative Commons photo

There is medical controversy over the benefit of using long-term antibiotics to treat lingering symptoms of tick-borne illnesses.

Story + video: Miller to leave Commerce to head Shumlin’s health care reform

From left, incoming Secretary of Commerce and Community Development Patricia Moulton, Administration Secretary Jeb Spaulding and new chief of health care reform Lawrence Miller. Photo by Tom Brown/VTDigger

Lawrence Miller named chief of health care reform, while Patricia Moulton will replace Miller as Secretary of the Agency of Commerce and Community Development.

House takes scalpel to health care reform bill

The Vermont Workers' Center sponsors a Health and Diginity Rally in the Cedar Creek Room of the Vermont Statehouse in Montpelier on opening day of the 2014 legislative session. Photo by Roger Crowley/for VTDigger

There are substantive policy proposals that will impact the implementation of universal health care in both the Senate version and the version taking shape in the House.

PTSD could be added to list of conditions for medical marijuana

medical marijuana SLIDER

Some lawmakers unconvinced, call for more study

Vermont doctors get the cold shoulder at medical conferences

Rep. George Till. File photo by Josh Larkin

Rep. George Till, an obstetrician, supports Vermont’s ban on medical professionals’ accepting gifts from pharmaceutical and medical device companies, but he hopes to modify the law to allow doctors to accept food and drink at events.

Dentists block proposal to allow licensed dental practitioners

A root canal gone bad is shown on a dental X-ray. Creative Commons photo by Wonderland via Flickr

Employing dental practitioners would allow practices in Vermont to expand their Medicaid patient population.

Insurers prodded to cover early addiction services

Injecting heroin. Wikipedia image.

Lawmakers hear how early intervention can save money in treating drug and alcohol dependence.

Forging Green Mountain Care: Cost-sharing explained

StockXchng image of stethoscope and calculator.

There are many unknowns about the state’s movement to a publicly funded health care plan, but VTDigger is starting the conversation with an occasional series on what Vermonters can expect.

Senate to introduce false claims legislation to curb Medicaid fraud

Medicaid

“As we’re moving to a world where the state’s role in health care is greatly expanded, ensuring that Vermont has the tools to protect its money from waste fraud and abuse is critically important,” said John Treadwell, chief of the criminal division in the Attorney General’s Office.

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