Trending News Today: Health Care Reform Proposal Could Increase Uninsured Rate Dramatically

Top news of the day from across the heath care landscape.

A new study reveals that a major health care proposal by Donald Trump would cause approximately 20 million individuals to lose coverage, reported The New York Times. If elected, Trump plans to repeal Obamacare, and replace it with a plan that includes new tax deductions, insurance market changes, and a Medicaid overhaul. One finding revealed that the amount of uninsured individuals in fair or poor health could triple under Trumps presidency, according to the article. The Times estimated that the number of uninsured would rise from about 2.1 million people to between 5.7 and 7.1 million. The result of the health care overhaul by Trump could result in an estimated 45.1 million uninsured people in 2018, an increase of 20.2 million. The analysis was conducted by the global research organization Rand Corporation, which uses computer stimulation to test the potential effects of health care proposals, according to the Times.

Nearly four years after 46-year-old Michigan physician, Hussein Awada, was accused of defrauding Medicare, Medicaid, and Blue Cross Blue Shield of approximately $2.3 million, a settlement has been made. According to The Washington Post, Awada agreed to pay $200,000 to settle the federal lawsuit, which accused him of several wrongdoings, including falsifying records to charge dead patients, subjecting patients to unnecessary tests, and billing for nonexistent office visits. Awada had run a pill mill for nearly 16-months, and distributed tens of thousands of controlled substances and narcotics to individuals who did not need them for medical reasons. The settlement was announced on Wednesday, amid National Heroin and Opioid Awareness Week.

Rite Aid Corp, whose sales figures fell below Wall Street estimates, blamed much of the pharmacy decrease on generic drugs. Same-store sales decreased 2.5% in the quarter from a year ago, as a 0.1% increase in retail sales was offset by the 3.6% drop in pharmacy sales, according to The Wall Street Journal. Compared with a profit of $21.5 million, or 2-cents a share last year, Rite Aid has reported a profit of $14.8 million, or 1-cents a share on a per-share basis. Rite Aid also cited the pressured reimbursement-rate environment as a contributor to the decrease.