The World Health Organization (WHO) defines universal health coverage (UHC) as “ensuring that everyone, everywhere can access essential quality health services without facing financial hardship.” This, basically, underpins the dogma for the Philippines’ version of universal health care coverage, now a proposed law that has passed the last stages of legislative action, and is now awaiting the signature of President Duterte. UHC is something that no sane politician will dare oppose, not just because health is foremost a human right, and safeguarding everyone’s physical and mental health is just, fair, and consistent with principles of right conduct and distributive justice, but it is also close to the heart of millions of Filipinos. Translating the UHC’s canon into practical, down-to-earth terms, however, is different for each country that subscribes to it. Because of the substantial resources needed to attain ideal health care for all, governments have to … [Read more...] about Philippine’s Universal Health Care: Political gimmick?
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NEW YORK: Walmart and Home Depot , two of the top 10 U.S. employers, have embraced a health insurance strategy that punishes drugmakers for using discount cards to keep patients from switching or stopping their medications.Large U.S. companies have started tightly managing how employees and their family members use these popular discount, or copay, cards for everything from multiple sclerosis treatments to widely-used rheumatoid arthritis medications sold through a specialty pharmacy.The move reflects their frustration that the coupons, which lower patient out-of-pocket spending, can be a disincentive to seeking less expensive treatments and drive up health plan costs.For certain therapies, the insurance programs extract more money from the drugmaker or redirect the employee to a cheaper medicine, according to benefits experts.Home Depot's program, run by CVS Health , has a particular focus on therapies for cystic fibrosis, hepatitis C, cancer, HIV, psoriasis, pulmonary arterial … [Read more...] about Walmart, Home Depot adopt health insurer tactic in drug copay battle
San Diego: Dr. Atul Gawande, a surgeon who was named this week to head the company being formed by Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan Chase to trim employee healthcare costs, on Thursday cited surgery as the single biggest U.S. healthcare cost and said there are ways to both cut costs and improve patient care.Speaking in San Diego at the annual meeting of America's Health Insurance Plans, a health insurance trade association, Gawande also said that end-of-life care needs to take into account the wishes of patients, something which he said is now sorely lacking.Gawande, who practices general and endocrine surgery at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston and as an author has made a name for himself as a critic of medical practices, said some of the focus on the high cost of health care in the United States is misplaced."We are screaming right now about pharmaceutical costs ... and that is just 10 percent" of total U.S. healthcare spending, Gawande said, noting how patients faced … [Read more...] about Head of new US corporate health plan cites surgery as biggest cost
Health The Trump administration on Tuesday issued a finalized rule that will enable millions of Americans to buy skimpy health insurance plans that do not comply with key Obamacare coverage requirements, marking its latest effort to chip away at the healthcare law. 20 Jun 2018 12:05AM Bookmark NEW YORK: The Trump administration on Tuesday issued a finalized rule that will enable millions of Americans to buy skimpy health insurance plans that do not comply with key Obamacare coverage requirements, marking its latest effort to chip away at the healthcare law. The rule, which the U.S. Department of Labor will post Tuesday, allows small businesses and those who are self-employed to band together and buy lower-cost health insurance policies, similar to large employers. But these insurance plans would not be subject to requirements under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), commonly called Obamacare, which included mandatory coverage for a set of 10 essential health … [Read more...] about Trump administration puts skimpy health insurance plans in place
I HAD to visit a relative at Batu Pahat's Sultanah Nora Ismail Hospital on the first day of Hari Raya and the first thing I want to say is, let us take our hats off to hospital staff nationwide for their "business as usual" sacrifices. I say sacrifices because staff like nurses, hospital assistants and attendants at most government hospitals are predominantly Malays and Hari Raya is the occasion closest to their hearts to be with loved ones back in the kampungs. And of course, to savour the "must have" Hari Raya dishes like lemang, ketupat and rendang. The nurses in the ward that I visited went about their work oblivious to the celebration outside and despite having their hands full they were smiling as usual, this time not to their parents or siblings back home but another set of their loved ones, their patients. I have written in the past praising their devotion and dedication to duty and without any hesitation I would say that they are truly the nation's unsung heroes, like the … [Read more...] about Let us all mind our health