Sep 28, 2018

Health care industry winners and losers in opioids bill

The Congressional Budget Office score of the House opioids bill is in, and billions of dollars are shuffling around in the health care industry.

Winners: Inpatient behavioral hospitals, which would receive more than $1 billion in increased federal Medicaid payments from 2020–2023 for patients addicted to opioids.

  • This will boost revenues for companies like Universal Health Services and Acadia Healthcare.

Losers: Medicaid insurers.

  • The bill also would cement a federal policy that requires insurers to spend at least 85% of their state Medicaid revenue on medical care, and if they fall below the threshold, they must refund the difference back to states. The CBO said this would result in insurers paying back $2.7 billion over the next decade.
  • Centene, Molina Healthcare, WellCare Health Plans and UnitedHealth Group are among the largest Medicaid companies.

Many states already follow a so-called medical loss ratio, and the Obama administration established federal Medicaid MLR guidelines in a giant regulation in 2016. The Obama-era rule did not require states to collect excess Medicaid profits, but this bill would.

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Updated 5 mins ago - Politics & Policy

U.S. enters 6th day of nationwide protests over George Floyd's killing

A protest in Philadelphia on May 31. Photo: Mark Makela/Getty Images

Local news footage captured a tanker truck appearing to drive toward protesters at a peaceful demonstration in Minneapolis, as demonstrators quickly got out of the way of the incoming vehicle on Sunday evening.

The big picture: Protests have continued across the country for six days, as demonstrators call for justice in response to the deaths of George Floyd and other other black Americans who have died in police custody or who have been killed in racist attacks.

Updated 12 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Tanker truck appears to plow into Minneapolis protesters

A tanker truck appears to have driven toward thousands of protesters during a demonstration in Minneapolis, video from the scene shows.

Details: Minnesota Department of Public Safety tweeted, "Very disturbing actions by a truck driver on I-35W, inciting a crowd of peaceful demonstrators. The truck driver was injured & taken to a hospital with non-life threatening injuries. He is under arrest. It doesn’t appear any protesters were hit by the truck."

  • The incident happened as protesters gathered at the Interstate 35W Bridge across the Mississippi River just before 6 p.m. on Sunday, per CBS Minnesota.
  • Gov. Tim Walz had "ordered highways and interstates to start closing at 5 p.m.," according to the Star Tribune.

Editor's note: This is a developing news story. Please check back for updates.

Inside Trump's antifa tweet

President Trump at Cape Canaveral on May 30. Photo: Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

As recently as Saturday night, senior administration officials told me that the designation of a violent cohort of far-left activists, antifa, as a terrorist organization was not being seriously discussed at the White House. But that was Saturday.

Behind the scenes: The situation changed dramatically a few hours later, after prominent conservative allies of the president, such as his friend media commentator Dan Bongino, publicly urged a tough response against people associated with antifa (short for "anti-fascist").