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The White House is reviewing a 2020 payment rule for Medicare outpatient services, and companies that make devices for a procedure that serves as a substitute for opioids are trying to persuade Medicare to create a new payment model.

Driving the news: Earlier this month, lobbyists with Smiths Medical and InfuSystems pushed federal officials for a new, separate medical code for "continuous peripheral nerve block," according to federal lobbying records. 

  • CPNB is where patients receive pain meds after a surgery through a catheter and infusion pump instead of taking painkiller pills. Smiths Medical and InfuSystems make the relevant products.
  • This isn't a new lobbying issue for these companies, and they told health officials the procedure "is a well-studied and practiced solution that should receive payment outside of the bundle," according to a copy of their lobbying presentation.

The big picture: Policymakers want to find other ways to treat pain — given the destruction that addictive opioid pills has caused — and many companies sit on the other side of the table selling opioid alternatives, with the hope of getting higher government pay.

What's next? We'll see if the lobbying worked in late July, when the rule usually comes out.

Go deeper: Drug industry lobbying for a big Medicare break in opioids bill

Go deeper

Updated 5 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 8:30 a.m. ET: 12,740,971 — Total deaths: 565,716 — Total recoveries — 7,022,846Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 8:30 a.m. ET: 3,247,782 — Total deaths: 134,815 — Total recoveries: 995,576 — Total tested: 39,553,395Map.
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  4. Public health: Fauci hasn't briefed Trump on the coronavirus pandemic in at least two months — We're losing the war on the coronavirus.
  5. States: Louisiana governor issues face mask mandate.
  6. World: India reimposes lockdowns as coronavirus cases soar.
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Hundreds of thousands vote in Hong Kong's opposition primaries

Photo: Isaac Lawrence/AFP via Getty Images

Organizers say more than 500,000 Hong Kong residents have voted in primary elections held by pro-democracy opposition groups on Saturday and Sunday, despite fears of a government crackdown under Beijing's draconian new national security law, Reuters reports.

Why it matters: The primaries, which aren't part of the city's official political process, are intended to whittle down the field of pro-democracy candidates in order to avoid splitting the vote against pro-China ruling politicians in September's legislative elections.

Biden's doctrine: Erase Trump, re-embrace the world

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Bastiaan Slabbers/NurPhoto, and Bastiaan Slabbers/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Foreign policy will look drastically different if Joe Biden defeats President Trump in November, advisers tell Axios — starting with a Day One announcement that the U.S. is re-entering the Paris Climate Agreement and new global coordination of the coronavirus response.

The big picture: If Trump's presidency started the "America First" era of withdrawal from global alliances, Biden's team says his presidency would be the opposite: a re-engagement with the world and an effort to rebuild those alliances — fast.