Mich. Blues, Beaumont Hospitals working on contract; Senate Republicans criticize new insurance fee;

> Coventry Health Care announced Tuesday that it bought Children's Mercy's Family Health Partners, a Medicaid health plan operated by Children's Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Mo., reports the Associated Press. Coventry said the plan serves about 210,000 Medicaid members and has $450 million in annual revenue. Article

> Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and the Beaumont Hospitals system still are trying to reach a new hospital contract, which expired Dec. 31, reports the Detroit Free Press. Spokespersons for both Blue Cross and Beaumont confirmed that talks are continuing this week. Article

> The Senate Republican Policy Committee attacked a new fee, which adds $1 per year to private insurance plans, that takes effect this week. The money will fund comparative effectiveness research to determine which treatments work best for certain conditions. The Committee said comparative effectiveness research "could be used to justify placing limits on costly medical treatments," reports the The Hill's Healthwatch. Article

> And Finally... Could you live with a bullet in your head for eight years? This man did. Article