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Open letter to readers: Today and tomorrow

By Lynda Waddington | 11.17.11

Wednesday was a difficult day for The American Independent News Network, which is the larger entity that operates The Iowa Independent. Our chief executive and founder announced two of our sister sites would close and their content would be moved to The American Independent.

ACS lockout continues; plan emerges to repeal sugar protections

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By Virginia Chamlee | 11.15.11

A recently introduced bill could have far-reaching impact on the U.S. sugar industry, including American Crystal Sugar, a farmer-owned cooperative that locked out 1,300 Midwest workers on Aug. 1.

Cain campaign: Farmers know more about regulations than EPA

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By Andrew Duffelmeyer | 11.15.11

The chairman for Herman Cain’s Iowa effort says the campaign “relied more on the word of farmers than Washington regulators” in deciding to run an ad containing claims the Environmental Protection Agency says are false.

Mathis wins, Democrats maintain Senate control

Liz Mathis
By Lynda Waddington | 11.08.11

The Iowa Senate will remain under the control of a slim 26-25 Democratic majority when it reconvenes in January 2012.

Press Release

PR: Nation should work to address veterans’ challenges

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

BRUCE BRALEY RELEASE — As US involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan ends, it’s more important than ever that our nation works to address the challenges faced by the men and women who fought there.

PR: Honoring veterans, help in hiring

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

CHUCK GRASSLEY RELEASE — A difficult job market is challenging the soldiers, sailors and airmen who have protected America’s interests by serving in the Armed Forces.

PR: In honor of America’s veterans

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

TOM LATHAM RELEASE — No one has done more to secure the freedom enjoyed by every single American than our veterans and those currently serving in the armed services.

PR: Honoring and supporting our nation’s veterans

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

DAVE LOEBSACK RELEASE — Veterans Day is an opportunity to reflect on the service of generations of veterans and to honor the sacrifices they and their families have made so that we may live in peace and freedom here at home.

Iowa delegation: Deal brokered for Medicare payment reform

By Lynda Waddington | 07.24.09 | 3:21 pm

The three Democratic members of Iowa’s delegation to the U.S. House of Representatives announced “a majory breakthrough” on the possible reform of the federal formulas that govern Medicare and Medicaid distributions.

According to a joint press release by U.S. Reps. Bruce Braley (Waterloo), Leonard Boswell (Des Moines) and Dave Loebsack (Mt. Vernon), the three have helped negotiate a compromise to health care reform that will effectively mandate a government move to a quality-centric payment system following a two-year study period.

The full press release is below:

Washington, DC – Reps. Leonard Boswell, Dave Loebsack, and Bruce Braley today announced a major breakthrough on the issue of Medicare payment reform as the healthcare reform debate continues to intensify in Congress.  Boswell, Loebsack, and Braley have been outspoken advocates for changing the way Medicare pays healthcare providers for services, from its current fee-for-service system into a quality and value-based system.

Boswell, Loebsack, and Braley helped negotiate a compromise adding language to the healthcare reform bill changing Medicare to a quality-based payment system in two years.  Specifically, the compromise would (1) require Medicare to conduct a two-year study on a value-based system, and (2) at the end of the two year study period, Medicare would switch to a quality-based system unless Congress specifically cast a vote to disallow that change.

“This compromise represents a major breakthrough in healthcare reform that will save taxpayers billions of dollars and reduce costly, unneeded procedures that don’t improve patient outcomes,” Congressman Braley said. “Our healthcare system should reward the best care.  A quality-based approach for Medicare will reduce costs to taxpayers and increase the quality of care for everyone, all while rewarding doctors in states like Iowa who provide the most efficient and effective healthcare.

“This issue has been a top concern of mine since I first entered Congress,” said Congressman Boswell. “This is a significant step forward for our state and the prospects of bringing real reform to our health care system.  I am pleased to have worked with my colleagues from Iowa on this massive fix and I am eager to see the final version of the bill.”

“Fixing the broken Medicare system so that our patients receive the highest quality care is critical to reforming the way health care works in this country,” said Congressman Loebsack. “By rewarding quality, we help ensure that patients are diagnosed correctly, are not forced to undergo unnecessary procedures, and have access to quality health care providers. It’s about time we rewarded care based on quality, not quantity.”

Medicare currently operates under a fee-for-service system, basing payments to doctors and hospitals on the amount of procedures completed and the number of patients seen.  This system creates a financial incentive to order more and more procedures.  Ironically, according to many studies, this increased number of procedures does not result in better outcomes for patients.

Boswell, Loebsack, and Braley have strongly advocated a switch to a Medicare payment system based on value and quality, which determines payments based on procedures’ effect on patient health.  In June, Rep. Braley introduced the Medicare Payment Improvement Act with Rep. Ron Kind (D-WI).  Reps. Boswell and Loebsack are co-sponsors of the legislation.  The bill would have required Medicare to switch to a quality-based payment system, outlining specific details on how to measure quality and value.

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Comments

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mona-Shaw/651310128 Mona Shaw

    So, why has Iowa Independent blacked out any state coverage on advocacy for HR676, the single-payer bill, sponsored by John Conyers? Are you guys in the pocket of Democratic Party leadership, or what?

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  • DOUGLASFIELD

    * THE FINE ART OF DENYING 45 MILLION AMERICANS HEALTH~CARE IN OUR JUDEO~CHRISTIAN NATION *

    AMERICAN RELIGIOUS LEADERS ALL ACROSS THE USA HAVE ALWAYS BEEN ABLE TO COUNT ON THEIR RELIGIOUS FLOCK TO CONTRIBUTE(TITHE)THEIR HARD EARNED MONIES TO THEIR MINISTRIES EVERY WEEK.

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    LAWYERS FOR POOR AMERICANS (424-247-2013)
    lawyersforpooreramericans@yahoo.com

  • DOUGLASFIELD

    * THE FINE ART OF DENYING 45 MILLION AMERICANS HEALTH~CARE IN OUR JUDEO~CHRISTIAN NATION *

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    LAWYERS FOR POOR AMERICANS (424-247-2013)
    lawyersforpooreramericans@yahoo.com

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