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Purported White House Memo Lists Policy Priorities For Medicare, Medicaid

A purported leaked White House memo calls for 340B hospital drug discount reforms, Medicaid work requirements, increased federal funding of Medicaid mental health services, the end of mandatory CMS demonstrations, and additional so-called value-based demos on drugs and medical devices.

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Approximately 50 critical medical devices are being monitored for risk of shortage due to Hurricanes Irma and Maria, FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said Friday (Oct. 20).

Fresh rumors are circulating that the White House is poised to release an executive order aimed at curbing the rise of drug prices, but lobbyists say they don’t know the contents of the executive order or even whether the thrust of the executive order is similar to the draft version that surfaced this summer.

The Congressional Budget Office estimates $1.4 billion in savings from House legislation to fund community health centers and several other public health programs another two years and pay for those funding extensions by shortening the grace period for paying Obamacare insurance premiums and cutting the Prevention and Public Health Fund.

In the wake of the HHS Office of Inspector General's 2013 findings that FDA failed to identify ways to evaluate whether manufacturers are complying with Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies, OIG is now investigating FDA's oversight of REMS specifically for opioids.

The federal public comment period for Iowa's 1332 waiver request endsThursday (Oct. 20), but state health officials haven't received any indication from CMS on the timing of the agency's decision, according to a health department spokesperson.

Congress should make hospitals report revenue generated by 340B drug discounts and change the criteria that determines which hospitals get those discounts, according to researchers from Vanderbilt University and the University of Chicago.

Accountable care organizations in the Medicare Shared Savings Program and three ACO demonstrations collectively saved Medicare $70.6 million in 2016 after ACO bonuses are taken into account, a CMS spokesperson said.