Press release: Bingaman talks Medicare bill

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Jeff Bingaman today talked to New Mexico radio reporters about a bill he is cosponsoring that would require prescription drug manufacturers to offer discounts to low-income patients receiving their medications through Medicare. Bingaman’s remarks can be retrieved by going to his website or clicking on the following link: http://bingaman.senate.gov/mediaasset/bingaman062011m.mp3 00:00 – […]

GOP should hold firm on Medicare

Freedom New Mexico May was a lousy month for the Republican plan to overhaul Medicare. A prominent GOP candidate for president criticized it, a seat in Congress was lost because of it, and the party started trying to distance itself from the whole thing. That’s regrettable, because reinventing Medicare is vital to our nation’s economic […]

Portales nursing home gets top rating from agency

By Argen Duncan: Freedom New Mexico Heartland Continuing Care has earned the highest rating from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. According to the Medicare website, the center has rated six nursing homes within a 50-mile radius of Portales, and Heartland is the only one with the five-star rating. Health inspections, quality measures and […]

Cutting doctor’s fees cause for concern

By Tom Philpott: Military Update Lawmakers took steps this past week to put military people at ease over how TRICARE benefits will be protected and, for older children, how coverage likely will be expanded as the Obama administration implements the new national health care reform law. But Congress continued to take only clumsy temporary steps […]

Medicare plan enrollment open

CNJ staff Medicare Part D open enrollment is 10:30 a.m. Thursday at La Casa Senior Center. Medicare beneficiaries can shop for a better Medicare Part D drug plan by reviewing a list of options for the 2010 Medicare Part D Plan list. Anyone seeking to enroll will need a drivers license or identification card, Medicare […]

Seniors should hear all sides of Obamacare

Freedom New Mexico A flap over what critics are calling a gag order on a major provider of Medicare Advantage health insurance policies raises immediate questions about a bureaucracy constraining First Amendment free-speech rights — and a longer-term concern about whether deepening government involvement in health care could mean curtailing informed discussion of policies on […]

Bingaman bill would save New Mexico health centers over $1 millon

U.S. Senator Jeff Bingaman is renewing his effort to ensure New Mexico health care centers are fairly and adequately reimbursed for treating Medicare patients.

TRICARE, Medicare team up

Air Force News Service FALLS CHURCH, Va. — TRICARE officials want beneficiaries who receive a disability check to ensure they are getting the TRICARE coverage they are entitled to receive. In general, most beneficiaries become eligible for Medicare at age 65; however, many beneficiaries younger than 65 also qualify for Medicare and there is one […]

Pick candidate with principle, not personality

The presidential campaign, unfortunately, is being reduced to personality and identity politics. We would be better served to pick a president on principles and positions, rather than the way “American Idol” is chosen. Once the preening and pandering is done, we will be left with what the winner will do in office. On one of […]

Local Roundup: State candidate to visit Clovis

CNJ staff Ben R. Lujan, New Mexico Public Regulation commissioner, will visit Clovis on Saturday to announce his candidacy for the 3rd Congressional District. The seat currently is held by Tom Udall, D-N.M., who has said he will run for the Senate seat being vacated by Pete Domenici, R-N.M. Lujan will be at Golden Corral […]

Late fee waived for Medicare Part D

CNJ Staff Low-income Medicare beneficiaries in New Mexico who are not getting federal prescription drug benefits can still apply for prescription coverage without a late fee, according to a news release from U.S. Sen. Pete Domenici, R-N.M. The Department of Health and Human Services has eliminated 2007 Medicare Part D late enrollment penalties for low-income […]

July 18, 2006 Letters to the Editor

Killing prairie dogs illegal and senseless Regarding the June 30 CNJ report on prairie dogs: While the prairie dog is not on the endangered species list, the burrowing owl is, along with the black-footed ferret, both of which are protected by federal law. Prairie dog burrows provide homes for these and a variety of other […]

Benefit program deadline approaching

By Pete Domenici: Guest columnist The May 15 deadline for signing up for Medicare prescription drug benefits is quickly approaching and there are still thousands of New Mexicans, particularly low-income residents, who have not signed up. Because we built in extra compensations to help poor seniors, I strongly encourage them to act now to sign […]

Hospital to undergo more comprehensive survey

By Marlena Hartz: CNJ staff writer Plains Regional Medical Center was out of compliance with Medicare’s conditions of participation during a state inspection conducted in February, a spokesperson from the federal agency that regulates Medicare and Medicaid programs said this week. When the Department of Health visited PRMC last month, it was there to investigate […]

La Casa offers clarity on Medicare program

By Tony Parra: Freedom Newspapers La Casa de Buena Salud healthcare officials are offering enrollment help for those who have not signed up for the new Medicare prescription drug program. Debra Herman, pharmacist clinician and director of pharmacy services for La Casa de Buena Salud, said since the start of enrollment in the Medicare program […]

Drug program leaves consumers confused

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A Medicare prescription drug program that started Jan. 1 has caused nationwide problems as it seems to be creating consumer confusion, requiring people to choose from dozens of competing private insurance plans. (Staff photo: Eric Kluth) By Andy Jackson and Kevin Wilson Consumer confusion reigns as the new Medicare prescription drug program starts up. The […]

Social Security laying ground for conflict

By Walter Williams: Syndicated Columnist I cringe with disgust when I hear politicians say, “We’re doing it for the children.” What’s worse is so many Americans mindlessly fall hook, line and sinker for the hype. Judging by our actions, Americans could not care less for future generations, and future generations will curse us for it. […]

Prepackaged news crosses line into propaganda

Freedom Newspapers There’s been a flurry of concern recently about the use of “video news releases” by federal government agencies and by the Schwarzenegger administration in California. These taped presentations of information with a spin are packaged like a TV news report and sometimes are used by local TV stations in ways that blend seamlessly […]

Browser beware: Online nursing-home ratings misleading

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Certified Medication Aid Brenda Walker, right, visits Jewel Sasser at the Retirement Ranch. (Staff photo: Eric Kluth) By Mike Linn: CNJ news editor A government Web site that compares the quality of area nursing homes has been criticized for being too vague, poorly updated and sometimes displaying incorrect information. Officials say information on nursing homes […]

Congress should rethink Medicare with cooler heads

Freedom Newspapers So far as we know, there’s no precedent for a court invalidating a law because it was based on false or deceptive premises (perhaps because that could put half the laws on the books in jeopardy). But Congress really ought to consider rescinding the Medicare prescription drug benefit law it passed and revisiting […]