HHS investigates CVS for Medicare fraud; Excellus raises rates by 9.33%

> The health reform law has cost more than $27 billion for states and private companies to implement thus far, according to an American Action Forum paper. Of that total, private businesses, including insurance companies, have spent about $20 billion, and state governments have spent the remaining $7 billion, reported The Hill's Healthwatch. Blog post

> The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services has launched an investigation into whether CVS Caremark has defrauded Medicare by refilling prescriptions without patient approval and then submitting the insurance claims to pocket the reimbursement, reported the Los Angeles Times. Article

> Excellus Blue Cross Blue Shield had a 9.33 percent rate increase approved by the New York department of financial services, which reduced the initial rate request by 1.09 percent. The new rate will affect about 90,000 Excellus members, the Syracuse Post-Standard reported. Article

And Finally… Chances are you've played hooky this year. Article