FDL Action Health Care Update: Monday (11/2/09)

(Thanks to the folks at FDL Action, who will be posting these updates periodically. You can find them in the future in the recent diaries tab or at the FDL Action tag.   – promoted by Brian Leubitz)

Here are the FDL Action health care reform highlights for Monday, November 2.

1. First, thanks to Eric Pusey of Minnesota Progressive Project for letting us all know what’s going on in the Minnesota Congressional delegation regarding health reform, the public option, etc. Thanks to Eric. Also, I invite other progressive state bloggers to send me (at [email protected]) their “Voices from the States” for publication at FDL Action.

2. Universities Allied for Essential Medicines and the American Medical Student Association respond to the October 30, 2009 Huffington Post article by Rep. Anna Eshoo, “Setting the Record Straight on Our Health Care Legislation.” It’s extremely detailed, going methodically through the key assertions made by Eshoo. Check it out.

3. Jon Walker writes about “The Achilles Heel Of Health Reform: Risk Adjustment Mechanisms,” saying that he is “truly frightened by the possible ramifications that potentially insufficient (and currently completely undefined) risk adjustment mechanisms will have on our health care system after reform.”

See the flip…

4. Jane Hamsher blogs about Anna Eshoo’s response to her article on Eshoo’s biologics bill.  Although Eshoo “vehemently claims [her bill] doesn’t allow ‘evergreening,’ which would allow slight tweaks in drug formulas to grant drug companies endless monopolies and keep these lifesaving drugs from ever becoming generics,” that’s news to Henry Waxman, and the “experts agree with Waxman.”  Advantage: Waxman.

5. Jon Walker argues that “[Joe] Lieberman’s obstructionism [on the public option] is clearly a hindrance, but not an insurmountable barrier.” The fact is, “[f]ifty senators plus the Vice President can do anything in the Senate if they really want to.”  So, in the end, it’s really up to Harry Reid. Although “Lieberman has just made Reid’s job harder, neither Joe Lieberman, nor Blanche Lincoln, Mary Landrieu, and/or Ben Nelson can stop the public option-alone or together.” Your move, Senator Reid!

6. Jane Hamsher urges everyone to contact Senator Sherrod Brown and his cosponsors, asking them to introduce their “amendment to the Hagan/Eshoo PhRMA boondogle.” The goal here is to facilitate “important lifesaving treatments for breast cancer and other diseases” becoming generics, and thereby more affordable to people. Let’s see, lifesaving treatments for people or profits for Big PhRMA?  Tough choice, I know. (snark)  Hamsher has more on this issue here.

7. Jane Hamsher asks, “So What Does Jay Inslee Think You Deserve For Your Enbrel Investment?” The choice once again appears to come down to whether corporate profits must be protected, even if they than “leave cancer patients in financial ruin just to pay for lifesaving biologic drugs.” Hmmmm.

8. Jon Walker explains “How The CBO Is Likely Very Wrong About Number Of People Who Would Use The Public Option.”  Walker crunches some numbers and estimates that “the public option would have closer to 20 million customers by 2019, instead of the CBO projection of 6 million.” Actually, according to Walker, it could be as high as 60 million customers, and these kinds of numbers are “what really scares the for-profit insurance companies, not the relatively worthless CBO estimation of 6 million.”

9. Jon Walker writes that Ezra Klein should be “fairly pessimistic on the effectiveness of the new health insurance exchanges,” just “not for the reasons he outlined.” Well, at least Klein got the “pessimistic” part right! Heh.

10. Finally, Jane Hamsher urges everyone to help Alan Grayson raise $500,000 as “insurance against what could be an otherwise dire Tuesday for Democrats.” Even better, how about we do both; help Grayson and avoid tomorrow being “a wipeout for Democrats?” 🙂