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Part of the planning process before entering into a military engagement is called “shaping the battlefield.” It’s a strategic maneuver that aims to create a warfighting environment in which your strengths are optimized and your weaknesses are mitigated.  With the election of Joe Biden as President, it...
Maybe – just maybe – Americans will get some relief from the relentlessly rising prices of pharmaceuticals. That of course depends on Congress pushing back against the drug companies’ formidable lobbying machine, their generous campaign contributions, and the industry’s historical coziness with members of Congress. But this year seems different.  When...
Wendell Potter A word to the wise: During this coronavirus crisis, keep an eye on every move of my old industry: health insurers. Behind the PR spin, they’ll be doing everything they can to deny care and maintain profits while making it look...
Experts are warning that within two to four weeks the United States will find itself facing a full-blown pandemic caused by the COVID-19 coronavirus. We often hear mindless propaganda from conservative and liberal politicians alike declaring the the US has “the best health care...
Many medicines are cheaper if you buy them outside your insurance for the cash price.
Five years ago, a bipartisan bill that would have allowed Americans to order U.S.-made prescription medicines from Canada, where drug prices are much lower, went down to a bipartisan defeat despite widespread public support—just as it has every time the idea has been considered by Congress over almost two...
As insurance companies push doctors to save money by switching their patients to generic drugs, complaints about those generics appear to be on the upswing.  That’s the observation of journalist Katherine Eban, who has written a book, “Bottle of Lies,” that tells a very dark tale about...
Shortly after midnight on Sept. 29, Felisha Walter assumed an identity very much at odds with the fullness of her life: statistic.  Walter was a devoted mother, a chef and caterer; gracious, giving and forgiving; spiritual and kind. And when she passed away, just...
Seventy-five percent of Democrats support “Medicare for all.” But the American health care industry appears to have pushed Democratic leaders away from backing House candidates who would support universal public health insurance. This backhanded approach occurs as key lobbies for the industry have united in opposition to single-payer with...
I’ve been thinking a lot about health-care mergers and acquisitions lately, and I must confess, it’s making me dizzy. All of this head-spinning thought was prompted primarily by the creation of Ballad Health Care, now the sole hospital system for my entire region of the country. Ballad was established about...
10 years ago today, on the first anniversary of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), I wrote about the good things the law did, but stressed that we needed to view it as only the starting point of a journey toward needed reform. Unfortunately, we have not made...
You have no guarantee that the doctors and hospitals that the insurance company say are in your network will still be there in the future. And you, not the insurer, get stuck with a the big bill. 
David Lichtenstein A new treatment could extend David’s life by 33%. But he can’t afford to take it. David Lichtenstein has ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, and likely has only 3 to 5 years to live. This summer, the FDA approved a new treatment called Redicava that could extend...
“We need to give the criminal purveyors of these products no quarter,” Scott Gottlieb, FDA Commissioner, said. 
High drug prices are Americans’ number one health care concern. The average price of a cancer drug rose from less than $10,000 a year before 2000 to more than $170,000 a year in 2017. Between 1995 and 2013, the launch price of cancer drugs increased by 10 to 12...
A two month coma, a misdiagnosis and a $3 million bill.
When affording health care is already a burden for Americans in rural and underserved regions, making patients spend additional hours and gas money for basic and emergency health needs adds insult to injury. Yet this is exactly what Tennessee and Virginia lawmakers allowed to happen.  In 2018, two rival health...
Dear Tarbell Readers, I wanted to give you a heads up on an exciting development regarding our recent story on the drug industry’s scheme with the Obama administration to discourage Americans’ use of international pharmacies. Many citizens depend on legitimate overseas drug stores to supply affordable medications. On June 11, Florida State Representative Danny...
Researchers at Brown and Columbia Universities found that disenrollment from MA plans “may indicate that plans do not meet the preferences of enrollees with significant chronic illness.”
America’s biggest corporations—prescription drug distributors in particular—are playing in our growing opioid epidemic.