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.

Obama Rejects Medicare Voucher and Turns to a Beefed-up IPAB Instead

President Obama would give additional power to the new Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB)—already highly unpopular with Republicans—to wring additional savings out of Medicare, according to a fact sheet the White House released in connection with the president's speech outlining his deficit reduction proposal.

Obama Draws Contrast with GOP in Deficit Reduction Plan

President Obama proposed what he called a "balanced" fiscal overhaul that would shave $4 trillion from deficits over a dozen years through a combination of spending cuts and increased revenues generated by a tax code overhaul.

Patient Safety Program Could Save Lives, Billions, HHS Says

A long line of health industry heavyweights flanked top Health and Human Services (HHS) officials at the National Press Club this past week to launch what Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services chief Donald M. Berwick has called the most ambitious national effort ever to reduce medical errors.

In the States, Heat—but No Light—on Exchanges

The extent to which states will ultimately decide to create health insurance exchanges under the overhaul law remains uncertain—but what is clear is that the controversy surrounding that issue is heating up in state capitals.

Health Takes a Hit in Spending Deal but Priorities Survive

The cuts included in the spending compromise for fiscal 2011 will spread pain across federally funded health care programs and harm important initiatives. But the hits could have been even more devastating, advocates and lawmakers said.

Deductibles in Individual Market in 2014 Could Be 'Substantial,' Study Says

The deductibles for the minimum health insurance coverage that some people will be required to buy under the health care law could be "substantial," says an analysis released by the Kaiser Family Foundation.