First Edition: September 8, 2010

In today's headlines, reports about how health reform is playing on the campaign trail and the latest on health insurance premium hikes.

Conservative Group Forecasts Medicare Doctor Access Problem
Writing for Kaiser Health News, Marilyn Werber Serafini reports in a KHN short take: "Getting a doctor's appointment may become increasingly difficult for seniors and the disabled over the next decade unless Congress changes the new health law, according to a report that the conservative National Center for Policy Analysis plans to release today. Due to scheduled 'draconian' changes in payments to doctors and hospitals serving Medicare beneficiaries, the NCPA says, seniors may soon face the same access issues that sometimes send poor Medicaid recipients to community health centers and safety net hospitals" (Kaiser Health News).

Health On The Hill – September 7, 2010
Kaiser Health News staff writer Mary Agnes Carey talks with NPR's Julie Rovner and the Kaiser Family Foundation’s Jackie Judd about this week's developments. For instance, as the Obama administration continues to implement the health care overhaul law, some myths – including a requirement that workers must pay taxes on their health insurance next year – have begun to circulate (Kaiser Health News).

ADWATCH: Ads Attacking Health Plan Miss Some Facts
President Barack Obama's health care initiative is getting toxic on the campaign trail (The Associated Press).

Democrats Say Health Care Can Help In A Handful Of Races
Congressional Democrats hope to use health care reform to their advantage in the few places they can — largely safe, left-leaning districts (Politico).

Health Insurers Plan Hikes
Health insurers say they plan to raise premiums for some Americans as a direct result of the health overhaul in coming weeks, complicating Democrats' efforts to trumpet their signature achievement before the midterm elections (The Wall Street Journal).

Health Net Is Cleared By State To Raise Premiums
A California health insurer got the green light Tuesday to raise premiums an average of 16% for 38,000 policyholders who buy insurance on their own (Los Angeles Times).

State Budget Crises Mount As Medicaid Rolls Soar
Although Florida's once booming population has leveled off, its roll of Medicaid recipients has soared by nearly 50 percent in the last three years, exacerbating an already dire state budget crisis (The Fiscal Times).

Consumer Reports Is Rating Surgical Groups
Medical groups that perform heart bypass surgery are now being rated alongside cars and toaster ovens in Consumer Reports (The New York Times).

Judge Won't Let Stem Cell Money Keep Flowing
A federal judge on Tuesday refused to lift his order blocking federal funding for some stem cell research, saying that a "parade of horribles" predicted by federal officials would not happen (The Associated Press).

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