Nursing homes serving minorities offering less care than those housing whites

By Jeff Kelly Lowenstein

Nursing homes serving blacks, Latinos provide less daily registered nurse care than those housing whites.

Analysis shows widespread discrepancies in staffing levels reported by nursing homes

By Jeff Kelly Lowenstein

Analysis shows staffing levels lower than what's reported on public website.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Nursing":

"… ing levels at the home that were lower. Much lower. A systematic problem Nursing homes across the country had similar reporting discrepancies between the t …"

"… sources, the Center’s analysis reveals. Data on the publicly available Nursing Home Compare website, which is promoted and operated by the government for …"

"… te-federal Medicaid program are a more accurate source of information than Nursing Home Compare. Those financial documents, which are harder for the public t …"

"… voice on elderly care issues, said the self-reported data included on the Nursing Home Compare website shows an “extreme overestimation.” “Some … fa …"

Methodology for our nursing homes investigation

By Jeff Kelly Lowenstein and Ben Wieder

Center compared self-reported staffing numbers with Medicare data

Excerpts from this story referencing "University of California, San Francisco":

"… ommendation from Charlene Harrington, professor emeritus of nursing at the University of California, San Francisco,  and on a peer-reviewed article by Bita Kash, Charles Phillips and C …"

Running a five-star nursing home

By Jeff Kelly Lowenstein

Top-rated homes had more nurses, less turnover

Excerpts from this story referencing "Nursing":

"… l government for overall quality — a 5-star score on a 5-star scale from Nursing Home Compare, a website the government uses to help the public comparison …"

"… inspections in order to earn a higher rating from the federal government. Nursing home administrators and a leading industry group deny those charges. Wood …"

"… rted staffing, particularly among registered nurses, on the public website Nursing Home Compare than the average daily levels calculated through Medicare cos …"

"… documents are generally more accurate than the self-reported data found on Nursing Home Compare.  The Center looked at a range of variables, including …"

Another whistleblower suit alleges Medicare Advantage fraud

By Fred Schulte

California litigation alleges 'house calls" yielded false claims

Excerpts from this story referencing "chief executive officer":

"… ia, Inc. and Alameda Alliance for Health.  None would comment. MedXM chief executive officer Sy Zahedi called the allegations “categorically not true.”  In a …"

GAO takes on Medicare Advantage spending

By Fred Schulte

GAO will investigate program spending.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Health":

"… attorney with the Center for Medicare Advocacy in Washington. America’s Health Insurance Plans, the industry’s trade group, wouldn’t comment on the G …"

"… y lobbied to scale back planned pay cuts to the Health plans. America’s Health Insurance Plans, the industry trade group, spent nearly $5 million lobbyin …"

Comparison shopping for a health plan

By Wendell Potter

California makes it easy to do your homework.

Excerpts from this story referencing "health insurance":

"… few weeks of this year, most of us will need to make a decision about our health insurance coverage for 2015, regardless of whether we get it through an employer or …"

"… y complaints are filed against them. Now that the law requires us to have health insurance — and buy it from a private insurer unless we’re eligible for a govern …"

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 "diabetes":

"… riations in levels of diseases in some health plans, from complications of diabetes to serious depression. The study concluded that “further policy changes …"

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 "Medicine":

"… onary and critical care Medicine at the West Virginia University School of Medicine and, before that, ran the X-ray-reading program at the National Institute …"

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 "Health":

"… s in It for Me? What Everyone Needs to Know About the Affordable Care Act. …"

"… fact, in some ways they have been part of the problem. Providence-Swedish Health Alliance, a not-for-profit, hospital-based accountable care organization ( …"

"… he Health insurance market are hiring companies like Chicago-based Valence Health, a fast-growing firm that offers services ranging from claims adjudication …"

"… in: An Insurance Company Insider Speaks Out on How Corporate PR is Killing Health Care and Deceiving Americans and Obamacare: What’s in It for M …"

Taking insurance companies out of health care

By Wendell Potter

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

Excerpts from this story referencing "Health insurance":

"… and even to hospitals that are looking to operate their own health plans. Health insurance in this country was initially provider-based and community-rated. The firs …"

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 "Pacific Research Institute":

"… wrote Forbes blogger Sally Pipes, president of the Koch brothers-funded Pacific Research Institute, a think tank advocating “personal responsibility” and “free-market …"

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.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Environmental Protection Agency":

"… y Council, has persuaded members of Congress that the findings of both the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Health and Human Services were wrong and should be r …"

Ten major findings from our investigations so far this year

By Jared Bennett and Sarah Whitmire

Investigations from the first half of 2014

Excerpts from this story referencing "Medicare":

"… ut reporting to the state. Keep reading 6. About a third of all people on Medicare are covered by health plans that are susceptible to billing abuse Americ …"

"… ealth insurance plans are simply claiming they are. Our investigation into Medicare Advantage found that billions of tax dollars are wasted every year through …"

"… nd that billions of tax dollars are wasted every year through leakage of a Medicare payment tool called a “risk score.” The formula is supposed to pay hea …"

How Medicare Advantage plans code for cash

By Fred Schulte

Federal study criticizes Medicare Advantage and calls for changes.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Insurance":

"… boost payment rates. Clare Krusing, a spokeswoman for America’s Health Insurance Plans, the industry’s trade group, said the higher billing resulted from …"

Feds seek new authority to recoup Medicare Advantage overcharges

By Fred Schulte

Impact: Feds act to recoup overcharges following Center investigation.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Medicare":

"… lic. The case is pending. …"

"… ally, are seeking new power to recover excessive charges. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services says its wants to set up “a formal process to reco …"

"… Center for Public Integrity investigation published last month found that Medicare paid the health plans nearly $70 billion in “improper” payments — mo …"

"… verstating the health risks of patients — from 2008 through 2013 alone. Medicare expects to pay more for sicker patients and less for those in good health …"

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 "Environmental Protection Agency":

"… rs in history. Extrapolating from those studies, scientists with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency have tentatively concluded that arsenic is a serious problem at low doses. …"

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 "Medicaid":

"… at more needs to be done to protect tax dollars. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) officials unveiled a new data analysis system to identify o …"

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 "Heartland Institute":

"… Service (NHS). The headline of a story on the website of the conservative Heartland Institute summed up the GOP’s feelings about Berwick at the time: “CMS Nominee F …"

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.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Medicare":

"… y Gordon Witkin.      …"

"… ls that billions of tax dollars are wasted every year through leakage of a Medicare payment tool called a "risk score". Get involved   If you are a hea …"

"… are a health professional or medical coder and have a story to tell about Medicare Advantage billing issues or “risk scores”, please send Fred Schul …"

"… res”, please send Fred Schulte an email. If you are a patient in a Medicare Advantage plan and have been scheduled for a “home visit” let us know …"

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 "physician":

"… eir visit, they report their exam findings to the patient’s primary care physician. Yet there’s more to this spurt in home visits than the appearance of e …"

"… the trouble to look after them, supporters say. “Who wouldn’t want a physician to sit across from them for an hour asking what is ailing them free of cha …"

"… ‘urgent’ referrals so our members could receive immediate care from a physician or hospital.”  The debate over home visits has gotten little atten …"

"… person from Medicare in a year as a result. The plans pay about $300 for a physician or nurse practitioner to conduct the home exam, so it more than pays for i …"

150 billion reasons Medicare Advantage matters

By Eleanor Bell

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

Excerpts from this story referencing "Medicare":

"… should be some accountability. …"

"… llion this year, but our latest investigation found that manipulation of a Medicare Advantage payment tool called a “risk score” is adding billions to the …"

"… journalist Fred Schulte. For more than a year, he’s been investigating Medicare Advantage, the government-backed alternative to Medicare for seniors run m …"

"… een investigating Medicare Advantage, the government-backed alternative to Medicare for seniors run mostly by private companies. At the heart of the story ar …"

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.

Excerpts from this story referencing "diabetes":

"… nbsp;that a Humana-owned clinic diagnosed patients with conditions such as diabetes with complications, which boosted Medicare payments. She alleged that thos …"

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.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Medicaid":

"… y of the $70 billion in "improper" payments? The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which runs the program, has broad authority to recoup overpaymen …"

Center sues in an effort to make Medicare Advantage files public

By Fred Schulte

Center sues to make records public.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Medicaid":

"… r reporter Fred Schulte requested records from the Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), an arm of HHS, in a May 21, 2013, letter. The letter asked …"

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.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Insurance":

"… e campaign behind the scenes was the trade association, America’s Health Insurance Plans. With help from a right-wing Canadian outfit called the Fraser Insti …"

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