Comparison shopping for a health plan

By Wendell Potter

California makes it easy to do your homework

Excerpts from this story referencing "Health":

"… plans, you can go to Healthcare.gov, maintained by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, or a private online source like Healthinsurance.org, w …"

"… t experience.  They were followed by Blue Shield of California, Sharp Health Plan (in greater San Diego), and Western Health Advantage (in the Sacramen …"

"… hield of California, Sharp Health Plan (in greater San Diego), and Western Health Advantage (in the Sacramento area).  All of those plans are also nonp …"

"… ts. The plans with the fewest stars were Aetna, Anthem Blue Cross, Cigna, Health Net and UnitedHealthcare of California, all for-profit companies. Convers …"

A call for more scrutiny of private Medicare Advantage plans

By Fred Schulte

Researchers say aggressive billing by private plans may require more scrutiny

Excerpts from this story referencing "Center for Public Integrity":

"… k score] adjustment,” Kronick said in response to questions posed by the Center for Public Integrity. (Kronick required that questions be submitted in writing and responded to …"

"… s and that results in massive profits across a population over time.” A Center for Public Integrity investigation published in June found that Medicare made ne …"

"… ther positively or negatively, on health care quality,” Kronick told the Center for Public Integrity. Kronick said that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the ar …"

"… or may not be coming down the road,” said spokesman Raymond Thorn. (The Center for Public Integrity in May sued CMS under the Freedom of Information Act to compel the agency …"

How a coal miner's autopsy proved a top doctor wrong

By Chris Hamby

When a coal miner's lungs finally gave out, his autopsy proved a top doctor was wrong — giving hope to thousands of other miners.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Center for Public Integrity":

"… e face of a series of investigative stories I wrote last year while at the Center for Public Integrity; the series logo featured an image of him holding his hardhat with tubes f …"

"… ss maybe I helped some people?” Chris Hamby, a former reporter with the Center for Public Integrity, now works for BuzzFeed. …"

New types of health care delivery are improving the 'patient experience'

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: eliminating role of insurers could improve health care delivery.

Excerpts from this story referencing "University of Washington":

"… providing both coverage and care to many Boeing employees, along with UW (University of Washington) Medicine — without an insurance firm. Officials at Providence-Swedish t …"

Taking insurance companies out of health care

By Wendell Potter

If Boeing experiment flies, health care system could be transformed.

Dire predictions of endless waits for a doctor have proven unfounded

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: Obamacare has not resulted in long waits for a doctor.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Health":

"… out. To find out if the critics’ were prescient or way off base, Kaiser Health News reporter Phil Galewitz went looking for problems. He didn’t find ma …"

National Academy of Sciences agrees with EPA that formaldehyde causes cancer

By David Heath

To the chemical industry's chagrin, a National Academy of Sciences review found that formaldehyde causes cancer.

Ten major findings from our investigations so far this year

By Jared Bennett and Sarah Whitmire

Investigations from the first half of 2014

How Medicare Advantage plans code for cash

By Fred Schulte

Federal study criticizes Medicare Advantage and calls for changes.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Health":

"… years. Analyzing government data never before made public, Department of Health and Human Services researchers found that many plans exaggerate how sick t …"

"… are and Medicaid Services, part of HHS. Kronick directs the HHS Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, whose mission is to improve Health care delivery …"

"… said Dr. David Wennberg, a researcher at the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice who has studied Medicare billing trends. Hea …"

"… lth Policy and Clinical Practice who has studied Medicare billing trends. Health care fraud expert Malcolm Sparrow, a professor at Harvard’s Kennedy Scho …"

Feds seek new authority to recoup Medicare Advantage overcharges

By Fred Schulte

Impact: Feds act to recoup overcharges following Center investigation.

Even low doses of arsenic trigger cancer in mice, study finds

By David Heath

Study by the National Institutes of Health found levels of arsenic similar to what some people consume caused cancer in mice.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Center for Public Integrity":

"… to amounts some people with private wells in the United States drink. The Center for Public Integrity recently exposed how lobbying by pesticide companies that sell w …"

What to do if your drinking water contains arsenic

By David Heath

Millions of Americans unwittingly consume arsenic, a potent carcinogen also linked to IQ deficits in children, in their drinking water.

Medicare Advantage plans require more scrutiny

By Fred Schulte

Government inspector says private Medicare plans difficult to investigate due to lack of access to data.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Center for Public Integrity":

"… s paid improperly, including $11.8 billion to Medicare Advantage plans. A Center for Public Integrity investigation published earlier this month found as much as $70 billion of …"

"… government overpays the health plans— and that some plans overbill. The Center for Public Integrity last month sued HHS under the Freedom of Information Act to obtain a wide …"

Praise for UK-style health system vindicates spurned nominee

By Wendell Potter

Former Medicare chief's support for UK's health care system may win votes in race for governor of Massachusetts.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Massachusetts":

"… . a central part of his campaign for another high-profile job: governor of Massachusetts. Last week, Berwick got closer to that goal during the state’s Democrat …"

"… nvention when he became one of three candidates to qualify for the Sept. 9 Massachusetts primary. State Treasurer Steven Grossman and Attorney General Martha Coakl …"

"… d try to get a copy of the Commonwealth Fund report in the hands of every Massachusetts voter. And he might be tempted to send an “I told you so” note to a fe …"

Get involved: Help Medicare Advantage investigation go further with donations and news tips

Join us in finding problems with Medicare Advantage billing, “risk scores”, or home visits.

Home is where the money is for Medicare Advantage plans

By Fred Schulte

Medicare Advantage home visits may not improve health, but boost risk scores and cost taxpayers billions.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Massachusetts":

"… their services as “revenue optimization.” Predilytics, a Burlington, Massachusetts, health information analytics firm, markets software to Medicare Advantage …"

150 billion reasons Medicare Advantage matters

By Eleanor Bell

Reporter Fred Schulte discusses his investigation into billions of dollars misspent on Medicare Advantage plans.

Why Medicare Advantage costs taxpayers billions more than it should

By Fred Schulte, David Donald and Erin Durkin

Critics warned of billing abuse in Medicare Advantage health plans, but oversight is lagging.

Whistleblower suit says health plan cheated government out of more than $1 billion

By Fred Schulte

Lawsuit: executives worried health plan would be ‘screwed’ if feds heard of overcharges.

Explaining Medicare Advantage, and why it matters to you

By Fred Schulte and Sarah Whitmire

Explaining risk scores, Medicare Advantage and what alleged overbilling could mean for the Affordable Care Act.

Center sues in an effort to make Medicare Advantage files public

By Fred Schulte

Center sues to make records public.

A different way of thinking about health care

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: Canadians take pride in their health care system.

The Canadian health care system I disparaged

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: health care system up north is more efficient.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Medicine":

"… RAND Corporation found in a 2004 study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine that the VHA outperformed all other sectors of the U.S. health care system …"

American-style health care system pushed in Canada

By Wendell Potter

Canada's conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper wants to remake nation's health care system.

The health care industry's campaign of fear, uncertainty and doubt

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: health insurers use a host of tactics to erode support for Obamacare.

Dental chain may be booted from Medicaid program

By David Heath

Small Smiles, under federal scrutiny for performing unnecessary dental treatments on children, could be barred from the Medicaid program.

Dizzying array of options in Obamacare can lead to expensive mistakes

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: Health insurers offer a wide range of plans on exchanges, customers should pay attention to the details.

GOP megadonor Harold Simmons bankrolled liberal causes

By Dave Levinthal

The charitable foundation of the late Harold Simmons contributed big bucks to Planned Parenthood, other left-leaning causes in 2012.

CDC launches industry-financed studies of deadly kidney disease in Central America

By Sasha Chavkin

The CDC launches industry-funded research into a kidney disease killing thousands of Central American agricultural workers.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Mario Amador":

"… etween CKD and the activities conducted in the sugarcane industry,” said Mario Amador, general manager of Nicaragua’s National Committee of Sugar Producers, o …"

Massachusetts tackles next phase of health care reform: controlling costs

By Wendell Potter

Massachusetts leading the way in effort to control costs.

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