Mar 10, 2020 - Health

Feds tell nursing homes to restrict visitors

The Life Care Center nursing home in Kirkland, Washington. Photo: David Ryder/Getty Images

Nursing homes should not allow visitors into their facilities who live in a place "where community-based spread of COVID-19 is occurring," or meet other criteria, according to new recommendations from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

Why it matters: Older adults are especially susceptible to catching the coronavirus, so the federal government is trying to limit the spread for a vulnerable population. However, hospices don't have these visiting restrictions.

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First federal prison inmate dies from coronavirus

Photo: John Greim/LightRocket via Getty Images

A 47-year-old inmate at a federal prison in Louisiana died Saturday from the coronavirus, marking the first virus-related inmate death in the federal prison system, a Bureau of Prisons spokesperson told NBC News.

Why it matters: U.S. prisons, jails and detention facilities are dangerously susceptible to the coronavirus because they are confined spaces and are often overcrowded.

Go deeperArrowMar 29, 2020 - Health

Seniors could pay less for insulin with new Medicare model

Photo: Kerem Yucel/AFP via Getty Images

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced yesterday that it's launching a new voluntary model that would allow seniors to buy insulin with no more than a $35 monthly copay.

Why it matters: Medicare beneficiaries who rely on insulin and are enrolled in a participating plan would save an average of $446 a year in out-of-pocket costs. This move may not target the overall price of insulin, but it could meaningfully lower what seniors pay themselves for it.

Go deeper: Insulin prices propel higher spending among diabetics

Justice Department sues Anthem, alleging Medicare fraud

Anthem's headquarters in Indianapolis. Photo: Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images

The Department of Justice has sued Anthem, alleging that the health insurance company knowingly submitted inaccurate medical codes to the federal government from 2014 to 2018 as a way to get higher payments for its Medicare Advantage plans and turned "a blind eye" to coding problems.

Why it matters: This is one of the largest Medicare Advantage fraud lawsuits to date, and federal prosecutors believe they have more than enough to evidence to claim that Anthem bilked millions of dollars from taxpayers.

Go deeperArrowMar 27, 2020 - Health