medicare http://michiganradio.org en Keeping tabs on how the shutdown is affecting Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/keeping-tabs-how-shutdown-affecting-michigan <p><em>The shutdown of the federal government is here. Now what?</em></p><p><em>We&#39;ll keep tabs on the people, programs, and places being affected by the shutdown on this post. Drop us a note below if you&#39;re affected by the shutdown or if you know of a program that we haven&#39;t mentioned.</em></p><p><em>If you&#39;ve sat this story out, and need some &quot;Shutdown 101,&quot; the Washington Post&#39;s WonkBlog&nbsp;has &quot;<a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2013/09/30/absolutely-everything-you-need-to-know-about-how-the-government-shutdown-will-work/">Absolutely everything you need to know about how the government shutdown will work.</a>&quot; That should about cover it.</em></p><p><em><strong>*We will update this post as we learn more information</strong></em></p><p>The shutdown shakes things out into two silos.</p><ol><li>&quot;Essential&quot; services/personnel, and</li><li>&quot;Non-essential&quot; services/personnel. Wed, 02 Oct 2013 18:00:00 +0000 Steve Carmody & Mark Brush 14655 at http://michiganradio.org Keeping tabs on how the shutdown is affecting Michigan Levin: "Time to face the music" on sequester http://michiganradio.org/post/levin-time-face-music-sequester <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;</span>The federal budget cuts known as the sequester are hitting home across Metro Detroit.</p><p>That’s the message Congressman Sander Levin took on the road in his district Friday.</p><p>Levin met with seniors, defense industry employees, and hospital staff in Macomb County. All have been affected to some degree by the sequester.</p><p>At St. John’s Macomb hospital, a 2% cut to Medicare payments has taken a $4.5 million bite out of the budget. About 70% of the hospital’s patients are covered by Medicare.</p> Fri, 07 Jun 2013 22:57:16 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 12954 at http://michiganradio.org Levin: "Time to face the music" on sequester The bill changing Blue Cross Blue Shield to be signed into law Monday http://michiganradio.org/post/bill-changing-blue-cross-blue-shield-be-signed-law-monday <p>Governor Snyder is scheduled to sign a law tomorrow that will transform Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan into a customer-owned non-profit insurance company.</p><p></p><p>Supporters say the change will make Michigan’s health insurance market more competitive.</p><p></p><p>But the AARP and other opponents complain the change will eventually cost nearly 200 thousand Michigan senior citizens the Medi-gap coverage they need.</p><p></p> Sun, 17 Mar 2013 18:36:00 +0000 Steve Carmody 11723 at http://michiganradio.org The bill changing Blue Cross Blue Shield to be signed into law Monday Sequestration spending cuts may put the brakes on some projects in Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/sequestration-spending-cuts-may-put-brakes-some-projects-michigan <p>Local governments and businesses are waiting to see how they will be affected by automatic federal budget cuts that take effect today.&nbsp; &nbsp;</p><p></p><p>In Grand Rapids, the city’s plans for a new rapid bus service may end up being delayed by the sequester cuts.</p><p></p><p>Peter Varga is the CEO of The Rapid. &nbsp;&nbsp;He says 80 percent of the funding for the nearly $40 million project is slated to come from the federal government.</p><p></p> Fri, 01 Mar 2013 15:30:00 +0000 Steve Carmody 11485 at http://michiganradio.org Sequestration spending cuts may put the brakes on some projects in Michigan Sequestration, Medicare & Michigan hospitals http://michiganradio.org/post/sequestration-medicare-michigan-hospitals <p>Michigan hospitals could be among those hardest hit by automatic federal budget cuts this week.</p><p></p><p>Under the sequestration, Medicare reimbursements to doctors and hospitals would be cut by two percent.</p><p></p><p>Laura Appel is the vice president for federal policy and advocacy with the Michigan Health and Hospital Association.&nbsp; She says sequestration would add up to tens of millions of dollars a year in loss reimbursements to Michigan hospitals.&nbsp;</p><p></p> Sun, 24 Feb 2013 19:57:00 +0000 Steve Carmody 11394 at http://michiganradio.org Sequestration, Medicare & Michigan hospitals Former state Attorney General Mike Cox sues Blue Cross Blue Shield http://michiganradio.org/post/former-state-attorney-general-mike-cox-sues-blue-cross-blue-shield <p>Former state Attorney General Mike Cox says Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan illegally denies seniors access to certain plans.</p><p>Cox filed a class action lawsuit Wednesday against the state’s largest health insurer.</p><p>It claims Blue Cross denies access to its most popular Medigap plan to anyone with a retiree health savings account. Medigap is a program that covers healthcare costs that Medicare does not.</p><p>Cox said the policy unfairly forces some customers to buy more expensive plans.</p> Wed, 31 Oct 2012 21:00:37 +0000 Jake Neher 9719 at http://michiganradio.org Former state Attorney General Mike Cox sues Blue Cross Blue Shield Michigan congressman will be in the spotlight at the Republican National Convention today http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-congressman-will-be-spotlight-republican-national-convention-today <p>A Michigan congressman in a tight re-election campaign will stand in the spotlight today at the Republican National Convention.</p><p></p><p>Republican Dan Benishek defeated Democrat Gary McDowell two years ago to win the congressional seat formerly held by Bart Stupak. &nbsp;&nbsp;The two will face off again in a rematch in November.</p><p></p> Tue, 28 Aug 2012 06:01:01 +0000 Steve Carmody 8843 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan congressman will be in the spotlight at the Republican National Convention today Health care law already has had effect in Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/health-care-law-already-has-had-effect-michigan <p>Hundreds of thousands of Michigan residents already have benefited from the health care law passed in 2009, according to the federal government. Some examples:</p><ul><li>&nbsp;More than 23,000 Michigan seniors and people with disabilities have saved $17.6 million this calendar year on prescription drugs because of the law, an average of $757 per person. The money goes to help residents with medical costs after they hit the Medicare Part D prescription drug coverage gap, the so-called &quot;<a href="http://www.healthcare.gov/blog/2010/08/donuthole.html">doughnut hole</a>.&quot;</li><li>More than a half-million Michigan seniors have received a free preventive health care service so far this year.</li><li>Around 1.8 million residents now receive preventative services with no co-pay.</li><li>Around 57,000 more young adults in Michigan under the age of 26 are on their parents&#39; health insurance plans.</li><li>Around 7,000 small businesses get federal tax credits for offering health insurance to their employees.</li><li>Six Michigan health centers have been awarded $3.7 million from the federal government to help expand access to care for 59,431 additional patients.</li><li>Around 114,000 Michigan residents will get $13.9 million in rebates from insurance companies this summer because of a rule that requires insurance companies give rebates if they don&#39;t spend at least 80 percent of consumers&#39; premiums on medical care and quality improvement. The rebates will average $214 for 65,000 Michigan families.<br /> Thu, 28 Jun 2012 18:39:25 +0000 The Associated Press 8072 at http://michiganradio.org Health care law already has had effect in Michigan Campaign to keep Medicare as is visits Michigan retirement communities http://michiganradio.org/post/campaign-keep-medicare-visits-michigan-retirement-communities <p>Opponents of proposals for&nbsp;major changes to Medicare spent today&nbsp;making the rounds of retirement communities in Michigan.</p><p>They denounced the budget plan passed by the U.S. House of Representatives.&nbsp;&nbsp;Under the Republican budget plan, future retirees would get a stipend to buy health insurance.&nbsp;&nbsp; Its&nbsp;an approach Republicans say would hold down costs and begin&nbsp;to rein in the deficit.</p> Thu, 05 Apr 2012 19:29:55 +0000 Steve Carmody 6925 at http://michiganradio.org Campaign to keep Medicare as is visits Michigan retirement communities Feds get guilty plea in Michigan painkiller probe http://michiganradio.org/post/feds-get-guilty-plea-michigan-painkiller-probe <p>DETROIT (AP) - A Detroit man charged with ripping off Medicare and selling powerful painkillers has pleaded guilty to conspiracy and health care fraud.</p><p>George Williams admitted Thursday that people were paid $220 to get prescriptions filled and then return the drugs to him for sale, including Vicodin and Oxycontin.</p><p>The drugs were peddled in southeastern Michigan as well as in Kentucky and Alabama, from January 2007 through December 2008. A big break for investigators occurred in 2007 in Wood County, Ohio, when deputies discovered a doctor&#39;s name on 55 bottles of cough syrup with codeine.</p><p>People posing as patients were also taken to a Southfield hotel or a Detroit house for a phony exam. Williams admits his business billed Medicare and received $422,000. Thu, 15 Sep 2011 21:39:28 +0000 The Associated Press 4176 at http://michiganradio.org More Medicare fraud charges announced in Detroit http://michiganradio.org/post/more-medicare-fraud-charges-announced-detroit <p>Federal prosecutors in Detroit have <a href="http://www.freep.com/article/20110901/NEWS06/110901027/Feds-charge-18-bilking-Medicare-28M-unneeded-services?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|FRONTPAGE">charged another 28 people</a> in three alleged Medicare fraud schemes.</p><p>The allegations outline typical Medicare fraud schemes totaling over 28-million dollars.</p><p>One scheme involved 14 people operating out of the Detroit suburb of Livonia, who allegedly submitted fraudulent claims for home health care services.</p> Thu, 01 Sep 2011 21:45:30 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 4005 at http://michiganradio.org Crowd demands Michigan Congressman Fred Upton talk jobs (video) http://michiganradio.org/post/crowd-demands-michigan-congressman-fred-upton-talk-jobs-video <p>Michigan Radio&#39;s West Michigan reporter Lindsey Smith went to Kalamazoo yesterday to report on a community forum with Congressman Fred Upton (R-St. Joseph).</p><p>Upton was invited by the Kalamazoo County Advocates for Senior Issues and he discussed the economy, health care, and social security with the group.</p><p>But as <a href="http://www.michiganradio.org/post/upton-calls-work-reduce-long-term-spending-%E2%80%9C-enormous-task%E2%80%9D">Smith reported</a> the &quot;crowd of 200 people also demanded he talk about what he&rsquo;s doing to create jobs and improve the economy. Several interrupted and shouted at Upton. Those doing the interrupting asked him about the economy.&quot;</p><p>Here&#39;s some video of that forum. Upton attempts to talk about the information on his chart, but he&#39;s interrupted:</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=axsLUEApuCc Tue, 16 Aug 2011 19:11:50 +0000 Mark Brush 3781 at http://michiganradio.org Crowd demands Michigan Congressman Fred Upton talk jobs (video) Upton calls work to reduce long-term spending “an enormous task” http://michiganradio.org/post/upton-calls-work-reduce-long-term-spending-%E2%80%9C-enormous-task%E2%80%9D <p>Congressman Fred Upton (R-St. Joseph)&nbsp;discussed the U.S. economy, health care reform, and the future of Social Security at a forum in Kalamazoo Monday.</p><p>Upton is one of twelve lawmakers selected to serve on a special Congressional committee. That committee will try to determine a compromise on long-term spending to help reduce the federal deficit.</p><p>Upton says the federal debt is &ldquo;unsustainable&rdquo;. He says the way to fix it is to get the economy moving so more people can get a job.</p> Mon, 15 Aug 2011 23:25:39 +0000 Lindsey Smith 3769 at http://michiganradio.org Upton calls work to reduce long-term spending “an enormous task” Sebelius, Holder to speak in Detroit http://michiganradio.org/post/sebelius-holder-speak-detroit <p>U.S. Attorney General <a href="http://www.justice.gov/ag/">Eric Holder</a> and U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary <a href="http://www.hhs.gov/secretary/about/biography/index.html">Kathleen Sebelius</a> will talk about health care fraud prevention at a regional summit at Wayne State University in Detroit this morning.</p><p>Law enforcement officials, consumer experts and health care providers are also expected to participate in the discussions, the Associated Press <a href="http://www.mlive.com/news/detroit/index.ssf/2011/03/eric_holder_kathleen_sebelius.html">reports</a>.</p><p>This is the fifth in a <a href="http://www.hhs.gov/news/press/2010pres/12/20101216a.html">series of summits</a> announced last June by President Obama. The AP <a href="http://www.mlive.com/news/detroit/index.ssf/2011/03/eric_holder_kathleen_sebelius.html">reports</a>:</p><blockquote><p>Waste and fraud cost the federal Medicare program and Medicaid, its state counterpart, an estimated $54 billion in 2009. Holder said at a December summit in Boston that the Obama administration&#39;s crackdown on health care fraud has recovered $4 billion in Massachusetts alone over two years. Tue, 15 Mar 2011 11:18:59 +0000 Zoe Clark 1653 at http://michiganradio.org Sebelius, Holder to speak in Detroit 21 charged in Medicare fraud crackdown http://michiganradio.org/post/21-charged-medicare-fraud-crackdown <p>Federal prosecutors have charged 21 people with <a href="http://www.medicare.gov/navigation/help-and-support/fraud-and-abuse/fraud-and-abuse-overview.aspx">Medicare fraud </a>in metro Detroit.</p><p>The indictments include doctors, physical therapists and clinic managers. They&rsquo;re charged with billing Medicare for $23 million in services that either weren&rsquo;t needed, or were never performed.</p><p>Andrew Arena heads the FBI&rsquo;s Detroit office. He says one of the most striking examples is a physician who did&nbsp;$8 million worth of home visits:</p> Thu, 17 Feb 2011 21:59:50 +0000 Sarah Hulett 1330 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan home health care agencies indicted for Medicare fraud http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-home-health-care-agencies-indicted-medicare-fraud <p>Four Detroit-area residents have been <a href="http://pod.michiganradio.org/documents/medicareindictments.pdf">indicted</a><a href="http://www.justice.gov/criminal/pr/documents/01-13-10fraud-medicare-%20indictment.pdf"> </a>by the federal government for Medicare fraud.</p><p>The Department of Justice says Medicare fraud schemes were operated out of <a href="http://www.patientchoicehealthcare.com/">Patient Choice Home Healthcare</a> and All American Home Care.</p> Tue, 07 Dec 2010 21:33:21 +0000 Mark Brush 492 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan home health care agencies indicted for Medicare fraud