Morning CheckUp: December 2, 2011

Foster kids are drugged: “Kids in foster care are significantly more likely than other children to be given mind-altering drugs, according to a study of five states released Thursday by the Government Accountability Office.” [Kaiser Health News]

IPAB to stay for at least another year: “Rep. Phil Roe (R-TN) acknowledged that the House simply doesn’t have time to take up his bill to repeal the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB), which Republicans refer to as the law’s “rationing board.” [The Hill]

Enrollment in Medicare Advantage continues to grow: “Medicare Advantage continues to surge in popularity among seniors and its premiums continue to fall, contradicting Republican predictions that President Obama’s health care law would halt the program’s recent and rapid expansion.” [Washington Times]

Health care as job creator: “Even as cutbacks in Medicaid and other programs gouge hospital budgets, and overall health care demand slackens as penny-pitching patients put off procedures in a bad economy, hospitals are creating new jobs: a net gain of 95,000 this year, 13,000 of them in September and 6,600 in October, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.” [Kaiser Health News]


Providers object to essential benefit recommendations: “More than 2,400 health care providers and advocates sent a letter to Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius today objecting to recommendations made by a panel of the Institute of Medicine regarding what benefits must be covered in state health insurance marketplaces developed under the Affordable Care Act.” [White Coat Notes]

EHR adoption increases: “In a survey conducted by the National Center for Health Statistics between February and June, 56.9% of physician respondents said their practice uses electronic health records in some capacity other than for billing. That’s up from the 50.7% of respondents who replied the same in 2010.” [Modern Healthcare]