Top news of the day from across the health care landscape.
In a new report, insurance experts predict that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) marketplace may stabilize this year, despite the looming threat of repeal, according to The Hill. Previously, analysts predicted that 2018 would bring market uncertainty and other negative consequences. The study suggested that insurers would benefit from premium increases, limited competition, and narrow networks that occurred in 2016 and 2017, in addition to a stabilizing population of sick and healthy patients purchasing ACA coverage, according to the article.
Last week, President Donald Trump removed the last 16 members on the United States HIV/AIDS advisory panel. If new members are not appointed soon, this action may result in the country losing ground on HIV prevention efforts during a time in which the opioid epidemic could cause an uptick in new infections, Politico reported. Critics of the action said that it suggests that the administration is not committed to combating the HIV/AIDS epidemic. However, the Trump administration said that removing the panel was a standard procedure that allows new members to be appointed, according to the article.
Recently, the FDA issued approval for Luxturna (voretigene neparvovec-rzyl) to treat pediatric and adult patients with a rare form of inherited vision loss that causes blindness by childhood. The groundbreaking gene therapy will cost $850,000 per patient, which makes it one of the costliest medications worldwide, The New York Times reported. The manufacturer previously estimated that the therapy could cost upwards of $1 million, but yesterday it announced a cost reduction after insurers voiced concerns about the drug’s affordability, according to the article.