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Teaching and rural hospitals had lower penalties in 2019 than in 2018 under the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services' readmissions reduction program, Modern Healthcare reports.

The big picture: This was the intended consequence of changes made to the program to take into account the patient mix in these hospitals. The hospitals — particularly safety net hospitals — had said they were unfairly penalized.

  • The changes, which were made through the 21st Century Cures Act, sorted hospitals into 5 categories based on the proportion of their patients that were dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid.

Details: According to a JAMA Internal Medicine report, 44.1% of teaching hospitals and 43.7% of rural hospitals had a lower penalty this year than last year.

Go deeper: Hospitals are making a lot of money on outpatient drugs

Go deeper

2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

McConnell drops filibuster demand, paving way for power-sharing deal

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (R) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell attend a joint session of Congress. Photo: Olivier Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has abandoned his demand that Democrats state, in writing, that they would not abandon the legislative filibuster.

Between the lines: McConnell was never going to agree to a 50-50 power sharing deal without putting up a fight over keeping the 60-vote threshold. But the minority leader ultimately caved after it became clear that delaying the organizing resolution was no longer feasible.

3 hours ago - Technology

Scoop: Google won't donate to members of Congress who voted against election results

Sen. Ted Cruz led the group of Republicans who opposed certifying the results. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

Google will not make contributions from its political action committee this cycle to any member of Congress who voted against certifying the results of the presidential election, following the deadly Capitol riot.

Why it matters: Several major businesses paused or pulled political donations following the events of Jan. 6, when pro-Trump rioters, riled up by former President Trump, stormed the Capitol on the day it was to certify the election results.

4 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Minority Mitch still setting Senate agenda

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Chuck Schumer may be majority leader, yet in many ways, Mitch McConnell is still running the Senate show — and his counterpart is about done with it.

Why it matters: McConnell rolled over Democrats unapologetically, and kept tight control over his fellow Republicans, while in the majority. But he's showing equal skill as minority leader, using political jiujitsu to convert a perceived weakness into strength.