Generic birth-control pills: $4 or $10? Or $9? Or $50?

Generic birth-control pills: $4 or $10? Or $9? Or $50?

The marketplace for birth-control pills is pretty interesting, and it seems to change by the day. A woman we know who takes Ortho Tricyclen Lo got this letter  not long ago from her insurance company, encouraging her to stop taking the brand-name pill (for which she has a $50-a-month copay) and to instead start taking […]

Checkup: The price of the pill, and the ongoing debate

Checkup: The price of the pill, and the ongoing debate

A roundup of opinions from the Web on the HHS ruling that insurers must cover birth control:   Planned Parenthood’s Bollywood video: The Planned Parenthood video supporting the HHS decision has gone viral.   Steven Colbert objects to objections: The birth-control decision is the end to humanity as we know it.  And what does a […]

Checkup: Less surgery, more fraud, higher costs

Checkup: Less surgery, more fraud, higher costs

Less money for surgery: “HCA Holdings, the biggest for-profit hospital chain in the U.S., reported lower earnings than expected Monday. And one of the reasons might surprise you: some people appear to be forgoing surgery, in part, because of hard economic times. When the company looked at surgical admissions hospital by hospital, it found they declined 1.6 […]

Shopping for insurance, Part 5: How do I decide?

Shopping for insurance, Part 5: How do I decide?

Looking for affordable, effective health insurance can seem to start with an impenetrable thicket of questions. And even after you’ve made a decision, you might feel that your consumer comparison-shopping radar didn’t save you from a mistake or two. We’re here to help. Welcome to Part 5 of our handbook for people who are shopping […]

Checkup: Stealth poll shelved, insurance denials

Checkup: Stealth poll shelved, insurance denials

Rolling back: “The Obama administration said Tuesday that it had shelved plans for a survey in which ‘mystery shoppers’ posing as patients would call doctors’ offices to see how difficult it was to get appointments.” Robert Pear, The New York Times. Quality of care: Clearhealthcosts.com concerns itself primarily with prices of care, not with quality. […]

Checkup: Doctor shortages, lost insurance, etc.

Checkup: Doctor shortages, lost insurance, etc.

Stealthy: “Alarmed by a shortage of primary care doctors, Obama administration officials are recruiting a team of ‘mystery shoppers’ to pose as patients, call doctors’ offices and request appointments to see how difficult it is for people to get care when they need it. The administration says the survey will address a ‘critical public policy problem’: […]