Monday, July 17, 2006

Bush Administration Plans Medicare Changes

Ho hum. Another example of "conservative" government at work.

The Bush administration says it plans sweeping changes in Medicare payments to hospitals that could cut payments by 20 percent to 30 percent for many complex treatments and new technologies.

The changes, the biggest since the current payment system was adopted in 1983, are meant to improve the accuracy of payment rates. But doctors, hospitals and patient groups say the effects could be devastating.


The new system is based on a commercial product developed by 3M Health Information Systems, a unit of 3M, the Minnesota-based technology company. In July 2005, the Bush administration awarded a “sole source contract” to 3M, to analyze whether it was feasible for Medicare to use a payment system modeled on the 3M product. The company said yes.

Guess someone should try to determine how many thousands of dollars 3M needed to contribute to which candidates in order to get this no-bid contract.

UPDATE: The 3M PAC is not the biggest donor in the Pharma/Health industry, but they sure do like them Republicans; 84% of its contributions go to the R's, the remaining 16% to the Dems.


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