Vermont and Oregon Publish Rates and Approve Insurers; Medicare Costs Straitjacket; Three Seattleites on National Patient-Centered Outcomes Advisory Committees

Busy week and it is only Wednesday:  Vermont first to publish new insurance rates; Oregon approves 22 insurers for its health benefit exchange;  RAND calls for need to re-examine Medicare payments;  Imagine a $1,206 toe nail removal bill; and Seattleites on three of four Advisory Panels for the Patient –Centered Outcome Research Institute.


The proposed rates that would be charged for a variety of coverage levels through the state’s health insurance marketplace range from an average high of about $1,700 a month for a family to an average of $745 for catastrophic coverage for a family.

The figures don’t take into account government subsidies that families could be eligible for that would lower these costs.

Oregon Approves 22 Insurers for  Health Exchange

RAND and the Medicare Strait Jacket

An interesting look at Medicare Costs, AMGEN and other costs associated with pharmaceutical and technology products.  Which is why we are starting our series on health care technology costs and outcomes starting on Friday.

Why We Need to Address How we Pay for Health Care

A similar thing happened to a friend who had a $2,500 facility fee, in addition to her doctor’s fee, for the removal of a wart on her finger.

And Uwe Reinhardt, health economist, on why new need to address health care prices.

Three Seattleites Named to Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute’s Advisory Panels

Tiffany Nelson, Director of Content of Care and President of the LGBT staff resource group for Group Health  was appointed to the Disparities panel

Dan Cherkin, Ph.D., Senior Scientific Investigator Director, Group Health Research Institute, Group Health Cooperative and Bastyr University Research Institute, appointed to Health Systems Improvement Panel.

David Flum, MD, MPH, Professor in the Department of Surgery and Adjunct Professor in Health Services and Pharmacy at the University of Washington (UW) Schools of Medicine, Public Health and Pharmacy. He is a co-director of the UW Centers for Comparative and Health Systems Effectiveness Alliance ( and directs UW’s Surgical Outcomes Research Center. He created and directs the Surgical Care and Outcomes Assessment Program (, the nation’s first statewide collaborative for surgical quality improvement and real world effectiveness research.

Good News (?) of the week

A promising look at new treatments for addiction

$25 Million Fine for Interstate Health Care

Kathleen O’Connor, (c) April 3, 2013


About Kathleen

Kathleen O’Connor: 30+ year health care consumer advocate, non-profit executive and author. For more information about Kathleen, please see "About" on the main content bar above.
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