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Medicare

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Q&A with  Blythe Bernhard and Jeremy Kohler: Uncovering a teen’s death and a troubled health system

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Patients are often misinformed about the details of their conditions or insurance status. Here are tips on how to get their narratives right.

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Where does one go to find an insurance fraudster?

As with most stories, you need to think about the people connected to, or affected by, your subject, and the paper trail your subject may have left behind. I’ll start with the people and talk about the paper trail in later posts.

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Dr. Manoj Jain takes a look at the patient doctor surveys that were conducted in Memphis and gives a doctor's point of view on choosing a primary care physician.

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In Santa Ana, Calif., I used to live near a health clinic that ostensibly catered to Spanish-speaking mothers, a noble calling in big city with a large, underserved immigrant population.

Years before, in reporting a story, I had found that the obstetrician who ran the clinic had among the highest delivery rates in the county. "According to a database of county birth certificate information, he was delivering, on average, more than three babies a day, every day of the year.

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Does anyone remember receiving healthcare in the 1960s? Everyone had affordable health insurance through their employer. All of the family was covered. Doctor visits were scheduled by whoever was in need of the care. That means, even if you were a 16-year-old and had the flu, you could still

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Here’s what we’re reading today:

Fight the Bite: California reports its first human West Nile virus cases of the season, in what appears to be a late start to a mild West Nile season nationally. What’s happening in your community? For some resources and ideas for your coverage, check out this Accidental Wonk post.

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Some interesting new data over at Medicare’s Hospital Compare database released Wed. is worth mining for enterprise stories about how people receive treatments for heart attacks and other medical conditions at hospitals in your community.

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After a 30-year career writing about health, Susan Brinks found herself in the throes of her own medical story.

She has been a freelancer since being laid off from the Los Angeles Times in October 2008, and her COBRA -- the post-employment extension of her health insurance -- runs out on July 20.

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Here’s what we’re reading today at ReportingonHealth: 

"You could nominate Gandhi to be head of CMS and that would be controversial right now." That gem of a quote, from a CBS News story on Donald Berwick’s recess appointment to run Medicaid and Medicare,  comes courtesy of Tom Scully, who held that job under President George W. Bush.

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