Seven of those states, according to Kaiser Health News, have enacted or tightened those limits in just the last two years.
Medicaid is a federal program that is carried out in partnership with state governments. It forms an important element of President Barack Obama’s health-care plan because under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act–AKA Obamcare–a larger number of people will be covered by Medicaid, as the income cap is raised for the program.
With both the expanded Medicaid program and the federal subsidy for health-care premiums that will be available to people earning up to 400 percent of the poverty level, a larger percentage of the population will be wholly or partially dependent on the government for their health care under Obamacare than are now.
In Alabama, Medicaid patients are now limited to one brand-name drug, and HIV and psychiatric drugs are excluded.
Illinois has limited Medicaid patients to just four prescription drugs as a cost-cutting move, and patients who need more than four must get permission from the state.
Speaking on C-SPAN’s Washington Journal on Monday, Phil Galewitz, staff writer for Kaiser Health News, said the move “only hurts a limited number of patients.”
“Drugs make up a fair amount of costs for Medicaid. A lot of states have said a lot of drugs are available in generics where they cost less, so they see this sort of another move to push patients to take generics instead of brand,” Galewitz said.
“It only hurts a limited number of patients, ‘cause obviously it hurts patients who are taking multiple brand name drugs in the case of Alabama, Illinois. Some of the states are putting the limits on all drugs. It’s another place to cut. It doesn’t hurt everybody, but it could hurt some,” he added.
Galewitz said the move also puts doctors and patients in a “difficult position.”
“Some doctors I talked to would work with patients with asthma and diabetes, and sometimes it’s tricky to get the right drugs and the right dosage to figure out how to control some of this disease, and just when they get it right, now the state is telling them that, ‘Hey, you’re not going to get all this coverage. You may have to switch to a generic or find another way,’” he said.
Arkansas, California, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah and West Virginia have all placed caps on the number of prescription drugs Medicaid patients can get.
Redditor justgrant2009 recently received one of the most thoughtful gifts in the history of parenting:
This lamp has everything my mom ever found in my pockets when doing laundry for me when I was little. She gave it to me at my wedding.
Don’t miss the “awww”-inspiring pic gallery, which offers close-ups of rocks, marbles, various small balls, and other detritus of a boy’s life.
From here : twistedsifter
Inhofe: Obama Administration ‘Doesn’t Want All These Pink Slips Going Out 5 Days Before Election’
(CNSNews.com) – President Obama is trying to prevent thousands of layoff notices from going out a few days before the November election, Sen. Jame Inhofe (R-Okla.) said on Tuesday.
Obama’s Labor Department on Monday issued “guidance” to the states, telling them that a federal law requiring advance notice of mass layoffs does not apply to the layoffs that may occur in January as a result of automatic budget cuts known as “sequestration.”
Inhofe, appearing on Fox & Friends Tuesday morning, said President Obama, through his Labor Department, “is trying to intimidate businesses, companies, corporations — not just defense contractors — into not issuing the pink slips,” which are required by federal law 60 days before mass layoffs or plant closings.
“(T)he president doesn’t really want all these pink slips going out five days before the election,” Inhofe said.
He noted that if the automatic budget cuts kick in on Jan. 2 — as they will if Congress can’t reach a deficit-reduction agreement — layoff notices would have to go out no later than Nov. 2. The general election is on Nov. 6.
Under the WARN Act — The Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act — companies with more than 100 employees must give 60 days’ notice if there is to be a mass layoff during any 30-day period for 500 or more employees (or for 50-499 employees if they make up at least 33% of the employer’s active workforce).
But in guidance issued on Monday, Assistant Labor Secretary Jane Oates said never mind about those pink slips:
“Questions have recently been raised as to whether the WARN Act requires Federal contractors…whose contracts may be terminated or reduced in the event of sequestration on January 2, 2013, to provide WARN Act notices 60 days before that date to their workers employed under government contracts funded from sequestrable accounts. The answer to this question is ‘no.’ In fact, to provide such notice would be inconsistent with the purpose of the WARN Act.”
In its guidance, the Labor Department also noted that “efforts are being made to avoid sequestration,” making its occurrence “not necessarily foreseeable.”
“You can’t not comply with the law,” Inhofe said on Tuesday. “Put yourself on the board of directors of Lockheed Martin. If they came out with a class-action suit of a thousand dollars per employee, that would be $120 million. You bet they’re going to send out pink slips. And by the way, they don’t have to wait until Nov. 2. They can send them out today if they want,” Inhofe added.
Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.) also criticized the Obama administration for the “obvious political aim” of its guidance on the WARN Act.
“At a time when our economy continues to suffer from staggeringly high unemployment, the Obama Administration today took away an important planning tool for Americans who may lose their jobs as a result of the failure of Congress and the White House to address the looming and entirely predictable threat of budget sequestration. Sequestration is currently the law of the land, and our nation’s workers have a right to know how these sequestration cuts which begin in January may impact them,” the senators said in a news release.
“This decision is especially disturbing in light of the fact that the Department of Labor previously stated in a Fact Sheet that ‘since it has no administrative or enforcement responsibility under’ the WARN Act, it ‘cannot provide specific advice or guidance with respect to individual situations.’ Today the Department did just that, issuing guidance to government contractors not to provide their employees advance notification of potential layoffs as a result of sequestration. This is a troubling turnaround that lays bare the obvious political aim of today’s announcement – avoiding mass layoff notices just days before the November 6th election.
McCain, Ayotte and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) this week are visiting communities in Florida, North Carolina and Virginia and New Hampshire that will be hardest hit by the steep, automatic cuts to the Defense budget.
“The Americans we have met today are asking Republicans and Democrats to do their jobs – to come together to find a solution that avoids this threat to our national security and economy. They are also asking for something that has been totally lacking in Washington – presidential leadership,” they said.
Republicans say President Obama has refused to engage in the debate and will share responsibility for the potential loss of one million jobs if sequestration takes effect.
“The Senate Armed Services Committee has received letters from eight defense companies, all of which advise that they will have to lay off thousands – if not tens of thousands – of workers if sequestration occurs. These Americans deserve fair warning that politics in Washington is placing their jobs in jeopardy,” McCain and Ayotte said.
Under the Budget Control Act of 2011, if Congress can’t produce deficit-reduction legislation by the end of the year, automatic spending cuts will take effect in 2013, split 50-50 between domestic and defense spending. That amounts to a $500-billion cut to the Defense budget over ten years.
In theory, the deep Defense cuts were supposed to be so unpalatable that Democrats and Republicans would come together to find other ways to reduce the deficit.
Experts say ancient building has started to tilt, with south side 40cm lower than north, and may need urgent repairs
The ancient Colosseum in Rome is slanting about 40cm lower on the south side than on the north, and authorities are investigating whether it needs urgent repairs.
Experts first noticed the incline about a year ago and have been monitoring it for the past few months, Rossella Rea, director at the 2,000-year-old monument, said in the Italian daily Corriere della Sera.
The Leaning Tower of Pisa, another of Italy’s most popular attractions, was reopened in 2001 after being shut for more than a decade as engineers worked to prevent it from falling over and to make it safe for visitors.
Rea has asked La Sapienza University and the environmental geology institute IGAG to study the problem and report back in a year.
Tests have begun to observe the effects that traffic on nearby busy roads may have on the monument.
From Grantland: What if the 2012 Olympics had been in New York?
India’s blackout, the largest in history, now affects more people than all of the U.S., Canada, and Mexico combined.
A staggering glimpse at the Internet, by the minute.
Ridiculous story now of how obama is related in some way to the first slave to come to America…
Pulling out all the stops, The New York Times reports the genealogy firm Ancestry.com has come up with a possible ancestral link between Stanley Ann Dunham and a slave named John Punch.
Obama’s newly discovered maternal slave roots are mired in supposition but distortions and misleading information are nothing new in American politics. The real story behind the NYT article is the fact we are in August of an election year and Obama is back to his old tricks trying to win white sympathy and stoke black anger.
Now a team of genealogists is upending that thinking, saying that Mr. Obama’s mother had, in addition to her European ancestors, at least one African forebear and that the president is most likely descended from one of the first documented African slaves in the United States.The findings are scheduled to be announced on Monday by Ancestry.com, a genealogy company based in Provo, Utah. Its team, while lacking definitive proof, said it had evidence that “strongly suggests” Mr. Obama’s family tree – on his mother’s side – stretches back nearly four centuries to a slave in colonial Virginia named John Punch.
The company said records suggested that Mr. Punch fathered children with a white woman, who passed her free status on to those children, giving rise to a family of a slightly different name, the Bunches, that ultimately spawned Mr. Obama’s mother, Stanley Ann Dunham.
The Ancestry.com team spent two years examining Mr. Obama’s mother’s past, focusing on the mixed-race Bunch line.
But the research left open a question: Was John Punch, the slave, a Bunch ancestor? Because records have been destroyed, there is no definitive proof.
The New York Times article goes to extra pains using words like “may,” “might”, and “suggests” in relation to the Dunham-Bunch-Punch composite. I
This is vintage Axelrod. Obama’s public relations man has built his reputation on shaping black clients’ bios enough to propel them into political office. Incidentals like facts and logic never get in the way of a good story.
In Obama’s case Axelrod has manufactured a split personality. There’s the post-racial Barack, a man above all the nasty race-baiting by his surrogates, and then there’s the entitled first-black-ever president, Afrocentric Barack who attended a radical black church for 20 years.
The notion that the president was not born in the United States remains at the epicenter of the anti-Obama mythology.
Finally, the name of Obama’s mother, Stanley Ann, was unusual enough that doctors and nurses in Honolulu remembered it and her giving birth.
In tandem with the birther notion comes the idea that Obama is a secret Muslim. … [H]is espoused Christianity must be a cover.
Another group of right-wing doubters hold on to the notion that Obama is a closet socialist … an idea that his every move as a pragmatic liberal politician over the past 16 years has utterly disproved.
Some others maintain that [Obama] was not smart enough to get into Occidental, Columbia and Harvard Law.
Texas Mosquito Catcher….really….