News 

Almost 100 million people a year ‘forced to choose between food and healthcare’

“Almost 100 million people are pushed into extreme poverty each year because of debts accrued through healthcare expenses” writes Verity Bowman for theguardian.com. An estimated 72% of those spending 25% of their household budgets on healthcare live in Asia.Researchers found that more than 122 million people around the world are forced to live on $3.10 a day, the benchmark for “moderate poverty”, due to healthcare expenditure.A total of 800 million people spend more than 10% of their household budgets on “out-of-pocket” health expenses, defined as costs not covered by insurance.At…

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Hospital operators in merger talks to form U.S. industry leader: WSJ

“The two have been in talks about a deal for months but have not reached an agreement, the Journal reported” writes Midwest Communications Inc for 95kqds.com. The merger talks come at a pivotal time in the industry, as a series of deals, major changes to the 2010 Affordable Care Act, dubbed Obamacare, and rising drug prices have reshaped the U.S. healthcare landscape.The merger would result in the formation of a large and diverse Catholic health system. Source: 95kqds.com Share This:

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Aetna wants to create a ‘Genius Bar’ at CVS, and it could forever change the way Americans access healthcare

“Here’s the full breakdown of all the parts of the healthcare system CVS touches on its own: With Aetna, CVS picks up a few more pieces of the healthcare system, such as medical benefits and population health tools” writes Lydia Ramsey for businessinsider.com. CVS Health’s $69 billion merger with the health insurer Aetna could put a lot more of the healthcare system all under one roof.It might mean that a lot more healthcare happens outside a traditional doctor’s office. Source: businessinsider.com Share This:

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GBP News 

Britain can lead scientific discovery, ‘whatever happens with Brexit’

“Mr Hunt said global healthcare giants were investing in Britain because it has one of the most productive scientific research bases in the world, including 80 Nobel prize winers” writes Laura Donnelly for telegraph.co.uk. The existence of a single, national health system – “ the first and most famous comprehensive healthcare system in the world” – meant innovation could be tested and refined at scale, Mr Hunt added. Source: telegraph.co.uk Share This:

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Healthcare prices hard to find online

“Reuters Health – Consumers who search online for prices of common medical procedures may be disappointed by what they find, a U.S. study suggests” writes Midwest Communications Inc for 95kqds.com. It’s possible that some websites with online pricing information didn’t show up in the researchers’ search results, if the managers of those sites didn’t use so-called search optimization tools, the authors note.The availability of online price information also appeared to vary by region.Roughly 17 percent of the websites, or 234, didn’t offer any information that appeared related to pricing or…

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$69 Billion Mega-Deal: What CVS Health’s Acquisition of Aetna Means for Investors

“CVS Health stated that shareholders can expect low- to mid-single digit earnings accretion in the second full year following the close of the acquisition” reports foxbusiness.com. It’s not surprising to me that CVS Health stock dropped Monday on news of the Aetna acquisition.But will bigger necessarily be better for CVS Health investors?.  Source: foxbusiness.com Share This:

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CVS made a $69 billion bet it can become the first place you go when you’re sick

“CVS Health and Aetna are merging, in what’s the largest deal of 2017” writes Lydia Ramsey for businessinsider.com. The $69 billion deal creates a new type of company that includes a health insurer, a retail pharmacy, and a company that negotiates prescription drug prices with drugmakers called a pharmacy benefits manager.”More’s needed to truly impact the trajectory of healthcare spending,” Merlo said in a call with investors on Monday.”It was clear that CVS Health was moving to become more of a healthcare company and getting closer to the payers, Mark had a…

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Acting HHS chief: Opioid epidemic is ‘the crisis of our time’

“President Trump is focusing on the opioid crisis, again, like the AIDS crisis in Africa; the opioids crisis in the U.S. is a real crisis” writes Salena Zito for washingtonexaminer.com. It is what I did as acting deputy secretary under President Bush at HHS, but now I’m the confirmed deputy secretary.Besides the opioid crisis, Hargan also discussed his mission to dismantle antiquated practices, move beyond Obamacare, and reshape HHS’s role in disaster relief.WASHINGTON EXAMINER: In your role as acting secretary, do you plan on staying on once they have a…

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CVS agrees to buy Aetna in $69-billion deal that could shake up healthcare industry, people familiar with the deal said

“Even before the announcement, the familiar drugstore chain has been a dominant player in the big business of negotiating drug prices for insurers and employees” writes Carolyn Y for latimes.com. And the deal is likely to set off even more mergers in the healthcare industry, which has been undergoing consolidation and faces potential new competition from Amazon.Pharmacy giant CVS Health has agreed to buy Aetna in a $69-billion blockbuster acquisition that could rein in healthcare costs and transform its 9,700 pharmacy storefronts into community medical hubs for primary care and…

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