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Reprinted with permission from the Center for Public Integrity

August 28, 2014

OP-ED | Docs, Drug Companies, Insurers Drive Up Medicare Costs

by Wendell Potter | August 28, 2014 10:00pm

Obamacare Forced Cuts At Hospitals, But Not For Other Segments Of Industry

As one of an estimated 78 million baby boomers in this country, I was delighted to hear that Medicare’s Hospital Trust Fund won’t run out of money until 2030 — 13 years later than projected in 2009, the year before Congress passed the Affordable Care Act.

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August 19, 2014

OP-ED | Washington’s Cynical Misinformation Game

by Wendell Potter | August 19, 2014 5:30am

Distortion Now A Standard Part Of Political Discourse On Health Care

In most of our country’s major institutions, we have little tolerance for cheating and lying. Whether it’s the court system, schools, businesses, even our sports teams, we impose stiff sanctions against those who deceive us to gain some advantage.

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August 15, 2014

OP-ED | Dire Predictions Of Endless Waits For A Doctor Have Proven Unfounded

by Wendell Potter | August 15, 2014 3:00am

Critics Falsely Claimed Obamacare Would Make Matters Worse

Among the many predictions of Obamacare-related catastrophe was that the law, by enabling millions to join the ranks of the insured, would force us all to wait longer to see a doctor and very possibly lead to a code blue for U.S. health care.

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August 8, 2014

OP-ED | Message-maven Culture Killing Compromise In Washington

by Wendell Potter | August 8, 2014 12:30pm

Public Relations Techniques Rule As Dialogue Gives Way To Talking Points

Former congressional staffer Scott Lilly, now a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, testified at a hearing on Capitol Hill in July that lawmakers might be able to reach a bipartisan consensus on how to improve the congressional budget process if Washington were not ruled by public relations people and message mavens.

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July 16, 2014

OP-ED | Attack Ads May Actually Be Benefiting Obamacare Enrollment

by Wendell Potter | July 16, 2014 5:30am

Positive Or Negative, Publicity Seems To Be Increasing Awareness

It’s encouraging that something positive can come from something so unrelentingly negative.

Since the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was passed in 2010, its opponents have spent an estimated $450 million on political ads attacking the law, according to Kantar Media’s CMAG, which analyzes spending on advertising. Supporters have spent a tiny fraction of that amount. Kantar says opponents have outspent those who favor the law by 15 to 1.

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June 23, 2014

OP-ED | Praise For UK-style Health System Vindicates Spurned Nominee

by Wendell Potter | June 23, 2014 4:34pm

Former Medicare-Medicaid Chief Is A Fan Of Single-Payer Option

In April 2010, President Barack Obama nominated Donald Berwick, a widely respected physician and health policy expert, to lead the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Despite having broad support among other health care leaders and a long history of patient advocacy, most Republican senators were adamantly opposed to having Berwick in charge of one of the country’s largest government agencies.

Continue reading "OP-ED | Praise For UK-style Health System Vindicates Spurned Nominee" »

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June 18, 2014

OP-ED | Health Insurance Lobby Keeps Medicare Advantage Overpayments Flowing

by Wendell Potter | June 18, 2014 8:00am

Center Series Documented Abuses, But Don’t Expect Action From Congress

A year-long investigation by the Center for Public Integrity has revealed that health insurers may have fleeced taxpayers out of $70 billion in just five years.

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June 11, 2014

OP-ED | Skyrocketing Salaries For Health Insurance CEOs

by Wendell Potter | June 11, 2014 11:55am

If They’re Making Millions, Should The Rest Of Us Have To Pay Higher Premiums?

If health insurance companies announce big premium increases on policies for 2015, I hope regulators, lawmakers and the media will look closely at whether they are justified, especially in light of recent disclosures of better-than-expected profits in 2013, rosy outlooks for the rest of this year, and soaring CEO compensation.

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June 6, 2014

OP-ED | Shameful Coverage Of Obamacare’s Real Impacts

by Wendell Potter | June 6, 2014 4:05am

Journalism That Focuses On Political Sniping Does Public A Disservice

If you read my column last week about a Senate hearing that showed how Obamacare has affected Americans, you might have wondered if I was in the same room with reporters who presumably covered the event.

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May 13, 2014

OP-ED | Insurers Following ‘the Playbook’ In Opposing California Ballot Initiative

by Wendell Potter | May 13, 2014 2:46pm

PR Firms, Front Groups, Misleading Studies All Being Deployed

LOS ANGELES — As I wrote in my book, Deadly Spin, the health insurance industry and other special interest groups use a tried-and-true set of tactics to push back against threats to their profitability. I referred to those tactics collectively as “The Playbook on How to Influence Lawmakers and Regulators Through the Manipulation of Public Opinion.”

Continue reading "OP-ED | Insurers Following ‘the Playbook’ In Opposing California Ballot Initiative" »

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