Medicare committee recommends expensive drug for some prostate-cancer patients

August 22, 2015

The Boston Herald: "The state's health insurance connector ?? the highly touted agency that aims to bring cheap medical care to the masses ?? has turned into a legal pit bull by aggressively going after a growing number of Bay Staters who say they can't afford mandated insurance ?? or the penalties imposed for not having it. The Commonwealth Health Insurance Connector Authority is cracking down on more than 3,000 residents who are fighting state fines, and has even hired a private law firm to force the health insurance scofflaws to pay penalties of up to $2,000 a year. All told, more than 7,700 people have appealed state fines for not having health insurance, according to connector spokesman Richard Powers" (McConville, 11/17).

Detroit Free Press: "An Ingham County Circuit judge has stopped Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan from implementing rate increases of as much as 66% for some seniors with supplemental Medicare policies. As a result of Tuesday's preliminary injunction, a public meeting also must be held. The Michigan Attorney General's Office filed suit in September against Blue Cross and Michigan's Office of Financial and Insurance Regulation, which asked the Blues to restructure discounts given some 8,000-9,000 policies ?? about 5% of some 200,000 seniors with Blue Cross Medigap policies. Seniors with the policies to be increased are either out-of-state residents or retired Chrysler and Ford salaried workers who get stipends from their former employers for health insurance" (Anstett, 11/18).

This article was reprinted from kaiserhealthnews with permission from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. Kaiser Health News, an editorially independent news service, is a program of the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonpartisan health care policy research organization unaffiliated with Kaiser Permanente.