General News

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Judge Expresses Concerns Over Casey Kasem’s Safety

By the Associated Press LOS ANGELES (AP) – A judge on May 12 ordered an investigation into the whereabouts of Casey Kasem after an attorney for the ailing radio personality’s wife said the former “Top 40″ host had been removed from Los Angeles without his children’s knowledge. Update: Casey Kasem Found in Washington State Superior Court Judge Daniel S. Murphy ordered a court investigator and adult protective services to find out where Kasem is being treated and report back to …

Medicare Database Reveals Top-Paid Doctors

By Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar and Serdar Tumgoren, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) – Medicare paid a tiny group of doctors $3 million or more apiece in 2012. One got nearly $21 million. Those are among the findings of an Associated Press analysis of physician data released Wednesday by the Obama administration, part of a move to open the books on health care financing. Topping Medicare’s list was Florida ophthalmologist Salomon Melgen, whose relationship with Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), made headlines last year …

Government Hikes Payment Estimate for Medicare Advantage Plans

By Tom Murphy, AP Business Writer The government has raised its payment estimate for Medicare Advantage plans months ahead of a busy election season during which cuts to the program promise to be a key focus for politicians and voters. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services said Monday that 2015 payments to the plans should increase less than 1 percent overall. That compares to a drop of nearly 2 percent that the government forecast in February. Analysts expect actual …

Health Care Law Helps Add 3 Million to Medicaid

By Erica Werner, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) – Three million Americans signed up for Medicaid under President Barack Obama’s new health care law as of the end of February, the administration announced on April 4, offering its first full accounting of how much the safety net health program has grown since implementation of the law. Many were newly eligible because of the law’s Medicaid expansion, while others already eligible but not yet enrolled came forward because of publicity around the …

Supreme Court Voids Overall Campaign Donor Limits

By Mark Sherman, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) – The Supreme Court further loosened the reins on political giving Wednesday, ruling that big campaign donors can dole out money to as many candidates and political committees as they want as long as they abide by limits on contributions to each individual campaign. In a 5-4 vote won by conservative justices, the court struck down limits in federal law on the total amount of money a contributor can give to candidates, political …

House GOP Plan Seeks Health Cuts to Balance Budget

By Andrew Taylor, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) – House Republicans are pressing ahead with a slashing plan to try to balance the budget within 10 years, relying on big decreases in health care programs for the middle class and the poor, as well as tax increases and Medicare cuts engineered by President Obama. The GOP fiscal plan by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis., promises $5.1 trillion in spending cuts – and unorthodox accounting incorporating the pro-growth effects of …