Morning CheckUp: November 29, 2011

Was Romney ever pro-choice? “In Massachusetts, when he was running for governor…a very liberal state, a state that was pro-choice, he was playing to the audience,” says Nancy Keenan, President of NARAL Pro-Choice America. “And he made promises to the pro-choice community at that time that he did not keep,” she said, including vetoing a bill that would have provided emergency contraceptives to victims of rape. “So the fact of the matter is he was not authentic in his position at that time.” [NPR]

States still deciding on exchanges: “For state governments, the coming Supreme Court ruling on health reform isn’t an abstract argument about the U.S. Constitution. It’s a highly practical question about whether, when and how to proceed with one of the health law’s most important and complicated pieces: setting up health insurance exchanges.” [Politico]

Feds reject waiver requests: The federal government has denied Indiana’s and Louisiana’s request to “waive new rules for the state’s insurance providers, meaning their customers will get rebates if the company fails to comply.” Gov. Mitch Daniels (R-IN) said the decision was another reason to repeal the law. [Indy Star]

Premiums are rising at a lower rate: “Group medical benefits costs are continuing to rise 18 months after passage of federal health care reform legislation, though the increases appear to be moderating, according to a survey of brokers conducted by the Council of Insurance Agents and Brokers.” [Business Insurance]

New CMS nominee finds support: “Stakeholders are formally registering their support for Marilyn Tavenner’s nomination to lead the federal Medicare agency.” “We have worked extensively with her in her role as deputy administrator, and she has been fair, knowledgeable and open to dialogue,” AMA President Peter Carmel said in a statement. “With all the changes and challenges facing the Medicare and Medicaid programs, CMS needs stable leadership, and Marilyn Tavenner has the skills and experience to provide it.” [Sam Baker]

Study shows younger women could benefit from mammograms: “A new study says that women in their 40s with no family history of breast cancer would benefit from annual mammography screenings, a suggestion that counters the U.S. Preventative Services Task Force’s recommendation against annual screenings for women in this age group.” [Modern Healthcare]