Washington Health Policy Week in Review

Washington Health Policy Week in Review is a weekly newsletter that offers selected stories from the daily newsletter CQ HealthBeat.

New Law Will Add Millions of Young Adults to Insurance Rolls, Commonwealth Fund Reports
The new health care law has the potential to cover millions more young adults because of provisions allowing them to stay on their parents' insurance until age 26, expanding Medicaid coverage and offering subsidies under the new insurance exchanges, says a Commonwealth Fund report issued last week.
Hospital Alliance Kicks Off Big Test of Health Delivery Redesign
Premier, a consortium of some 2,300 hospitals nationwide that jointly purchase health care supplies, made a big splash this week by announcing that it is launching at least 19 accountable care organizations (ACOs), entities that team up doctors, hospitals and other kinds of providers in new payment arrangements with insurers designed to reward treatment that keeps patients healthy and out of the hospital.
IRS Releases 'Guidance' Document on Health Coverage Tax Credit

Subsidies provided by some 20 states to help small businesses pay for health care won't reduce the size of the tax credit available under the health care overhaul law to certain small businesses to cover their workers, federal officials said in a press briefing last week.

AARP Reports Biggest 12-Month Spike in Brand-Name Drug Prices Since 2002

Manufacturer prices for brand-name drugs widely used by Medicare enrollees rose 9.7 percent in the 12 months that ended in March, the seniors lobby AARP reported last week. The increase "was the largest twelve-month spike since AARP began tracking drug prices in 2002," the lobby said in a news release.

House Action on Tax and Benefit Extensions Set for Next Week

A compromise package of tax cuts and benefit extensions will not reach the House floor until this week, complicating a push by Democratic leaders to clear the measure before the Memorial Day recess.

Dartmouth Launches New Center to Further Science of Health Care

Dartmouth College, for many years at the cutting edge of research showing flaws in the nation's health care delivery system, announced a new initiative to advance research on health care.