Good morning ... “Hair ice” is thin, interlaced ice that forms in patches and looks more like wadded-up cheesecloth or, from a distance, maybe even toilet paper. It only forms in certain conditions and usually melts at sunrise, but a park ranger in South Carolina was fortunate enough to capture some photos of this wonderful phenomenon.
HHS Secretary Alex Azar. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images
HHS' new report about ways to improve “choice and competition” in the U.S. health care system is stuffed with plenty of standard conservative talking points. But a few interesting policies endorsed by independent experts are also tucked inside, Axios' Bob Herman reports.
Details: Several of the Trump administration's recommendations mirror an April 2017 policy paper authored by health care policy experts Martin Gaynor, Farzad Mostashari and Paul Ginsburg. It calls for ...
There’s no mention of unscrambling hospital mergers or regulating prices. But the administration could win legislative and public support for some of these policies.
Yes, but: This document also serves as a political vehicle to stump for conservative hobbyhorses — like short-term plans, health savings accounts, lifting the repeal on physician-owned hospitals, and potshots at the Affordable Care Act.
NJ.com raises a good point: New Jersey has done just about everything it can to counteract the Trump administration’s cuts to the ACA. Yet ACA enrollment is down by about 16% this year in the state.
Between the lines: Enrollment is down across the board, compared to the same period a year ago.
The bottom line: Trump’s anti-ACA moves have gotten a lot of attention, so it’s entirely possible some people in New Jersey don’t know they’re still subject to a coverage mandate.
The first patent that Amgen filed for its arthritis drug Enbrel expired in 2010, but another slew of granted and active patent applications has extended the drug's market exclusivity through 2029, according to a new I-MAK report.
By the numbers, via Axios’ Caitlin Owens:
Why it matters: Extending a drug's patent protections is a way for drugmakers to keep competition off of the market.
If you thought hospital consolidation would slow down, in the wake of concerns that consolidation raises prices, you were wrong.
Bob spotted this nugget in a new bondholder document from NYU Langone Health, an academic hospital system in New York City with $4.3 billion in annual revenue:
NYU Langone declined to comment further. But it’s pretty clear the system wants to gobble up more market share beyond the NYC metro area, which has been going on for the past several years now.
Bush vs. Dukakis. Photo: Steve Liss/The LIFE Images Collection/Getty Images
Health care consultant and former journalist Michael Millenson flagged a detail I never knew about former President George H.W. Bush: He once appeared to endorse a Medicaid buy-in proposal.
"One thing I will not do is sock every business in the country and, thus, throw some people out of work ... What I will do is permit people to buy into Medicaid. I believe that's the answer. "— George H.W. Bush, during a 1988 presidential debate
That appears to be the beginning and end of Bush's support for such an idea, so this wasn't exactly a full-throated endorsement.
So, full-throated or not, it's still fascinating to go back and hear the conservative candidate mention an idea that sat dormant for the next 30 years, only to see new light on the heels of major progressive Democratic victories.