CMS scales back hospice drug initiative; UnitedHealthcare ramping up exchange offerings;

News From Around The Web

> The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services scaled back a proposal to require prior authorization for some drugs for hospice patients in order to avoid duplicate payments. Only four drugs directly related to hospice care will be covered by the policy change, Kaiser Health News reported. Article

> UnitedHealthcare, the nation's largest insurer, announced it would sell policies through exchanges in as many as 24 states later this year, a big rampup from the four markets it participated in during the first enrollment period that began last fall, the Associated Press reported. Article

> The Obama Administration decided that the U.S. territories such as Puerto Rico and Guam are exempt from the provisions of the Affordable Care Act, the Washington Post reported. Article

Provider News

> Patients today are no safer from harm caused by preventable errors than they were 15 years ago, a leading healthcare expert testified before the Senate Subcommittee on Primary Health and Aging last week.  Article

Healthcare IT News

> Taking all the risk factors for a certain disease and coming up with forecasting models based on those factors is the goal of a case study conducted by Mount Sinai Director of Cardiac Ultrasound Research Partho Sengupta. Article

And Finally... Fried chicken oreos??? Article

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