Reps. Ron Kind (D-Wis.) and Wally Herger (R-Calif.) have introduced legislation (HR 3660) that would allow self-employed individuals to deduct the cost of health insurance premiums from their payroll taxes, the Washington Post reports (McLoone, Washington Post, 9/26). Under current law, sole proprietorships cannot exclude health insurance premiums from payroll taxes of 15.3%, while corporations can deduct premiums as a business expense and exclude the cost of premiums from payroll taxes (Boulton, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 10/4).
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Guardian Life and Humana are introducing multiyear health insurance plans for small and medium-sized businesses.
Sixteen states and Puerto Rico to fund research and design in new ways to improve Medicaid efficiency, economy and quality of care.
Congressional Democratic leaders will not compromise with President Bush on SCHIP.
CMS plans to advance a "means testing" proposal that would require higher-income Medicare beneficiaries to pay higher premiums and deductibles under the Medicare prescription drug benefit.
The number of uninsured U.S. residents younger than 65 rose to 46.4 million people, or 17.9% of that population, according to a report released Thursday by the Employee Benefit Research Institute, the Kansas City Star reports. The report also included the following findings:
* More than 25% of self-employed workers were uninsured, while almost 20% of all workers lacked insurance;
* More than 35% of workers at private-sector firms with less than 10 employees were uninsured, compared with 13% of workers at firms with 1,000 or more employees;
Dean says by vetoing health care, which would make health insurance affordable for millions of American children, President Bush is once again putting his politics ahead of what's good for America.
President Bush's decision effectively denies healthcare for the ten million children eligible for coverage through a bipartisan, bicameral agreement to reauthorize the SCHIP.
Health information technology (HIT) is a powerful tool for improving the quality of long-term care, but it must be implemented to interact with other segments of healthcare in order to be successful.
New BDO Seidman study of the nation's Medicaid program draws much needed attention to a chronic and worsening problem: Medicare's cross-subsidization of increasingly inadequate Medicaid payments for nursing home care.
Humana provides coverage to about 4.6 million Medicare beneficiaries, with about 3.5 million enrolled in prescription drug plans and about 1.1 million enrolled in Medicare Advantage plans.
Program Will Combine Medicare, Insurer Claims Data To Accurately Determine Quality, Cost Of Physician Care
Health policy leaders announced a new program that will combine Medicare and private health insurers' claims data to provide more complete and accurate information on the cost and quality of physician care.
A political analyst and advocates for Hispanics recently weighed in on the SCHIP legislation vetoed by President Bush that would have reauthorized and expanded the program.
It's the season for seniors to start thinking about their Medicare Part D Drug Plan Options for 2008, and GeorgiaCares is offering help.
Bush has vetoed a bill that would expand a popular government-run health insurance program for children called SCHIP.
Summaries of several recent editorials and opinion pieces and a letter to the editor that address the debate over legislation to reauthorize and expand SCHIP, as well as related issues, appear below.
President Bush vetoed legislation that would have reauthorized SCHIP and expanded enrollment in the program to about 10 million children.
If Democrats are serious about extending the SCHIP program in a responsible, sustainable way, they'll have to start working with House Republicans to craft a bill that can be signed into law.
With a Medicare reimbursement cut of 10%scheduled for physicians in January 2008, health care providers and their "well-armed lobbyists are pressing Democratic leaders to make the first changes to Medicare policy since they took control of Congress," CQ Weekly reports. The cut could have a wide impact because it is likely to affect reimbursement rates from insurers, who typically use government programs' payment levels as guidelines.
CMS on Monday announced that the standard monthly premium for Medicare Part B, which covers physician visits and outpatient hospital care, will increase by $2.90, or 3.1%, to $96.40 in 2008 -- the smallest increase since 2000, when the premium remained the same, the New York Times reports. Most of the 43 million Medicare beneficiaries pay the standard monthly premium. About 5% of higher-income Medicare beneficiaries -- those with annual incomes that exceed $82,000 for individuals or $164,000 for couples -- pay a higher monthly premium on a sliding scale.
About 67% of men who own or administer small businesses consider employee health benefits important, compared with 59% of women in the same position.
Customer satisfaction with the federal government's Medicare hot line has declined.
HHS Secretary reiterated President Bush's threat to veto legislation that would reauthorize SCHIP and expand enrollment in the program to about 10 million children.
President Bush on Saturday signed into law a bill that will revise a provision in a CMS rule related to Medicare inpatient hospital reimbursements.
Participants enrolled in consumer directed health plan offerings are more engaged in wellness programs and are more likely to plan and save for healthcare expenses than those in traditional healthcare coverage.
Editorial and several opinion pieces examine the debate over legislation to reauthorize and expand SCHIP.