Viewpoints Starting Point For Fiscal Cliff Puts Entitlements At Risk Cancer Centers

first_img This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. The New York Times: The Cliff Is A Hard Place To Compromise [T]he closest thing to a framework for a big deficit agreement has more for Republicans to like than for Democrats. Mr. Obama was so eager to reach a deal with Congressional Republicans in 2011 that he agreed to the outline of a plan that made many Democrats cringe. It was well to the political right — with fewer tax increases, fewer military cuts and more cuts to Medicare and Social Security — of the bipartisan plan released by the Bowles-Simpson commission in 2010 (David Leonhardt, 11/10). The New York Times: Budget Showdown Offers An Opportunity For ProgressRepublicans in Congress will likely insist that reforms to Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security be part of any budget deal. Democrats should meet them partway. It will be impossible to get our long-run deficit under control without slowing entitlement spending. Rather than fighting all changes to these programs, Democrats should work to preserve their core functions and protect the most vulnerable (Christina D. Romer, 11/10).The New York Times: The Fiscal Delusion Now that the election is over, Washington’s attention is consumed by the looming combination of automatic spending cuts and tax increases known as “the fiscal cliff.” That combination poses risks, including economic contraction and erosion of confidence in government. But it also offers a chance to address our unsustainable and dangerous fiscal trajectory. … We should let the Bush high-end tax cuts expire, with an achievable, progressive reduction in tax expenditures. And we should have spending cuts, including entitlement reforms, equally matched by revenue increases (Robert E. Rubin, 11/12).Fox News: Off The Fiscal Cliff And Into The Great AbyssThe federal deficit exceeds $1 trillion dollars — up from $161 billion in 2007, the last year before the financial collapse. Spending is up some $1 trillion, as outlays for Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and other entitlements have increased by an amount equal to the entire 2013 defense budget. By the end of the decade, runaway entitlement spending will require shutting down the military or crippling many other domestic spending programs to head off ballooning deficits. With Americans living longer, the only reasonable solution is to raise the Social Security retirement age to 70, and pattern U.S. health care reforms after other national systems that better contain costs (Peter Morici, 11/12).The New York Times: The Choice Confronting Republican GovernorsRepublican governors and legislators routinely rail against federal intrusion in activities that they think would be better managed by the states. This week they will have a chance to show they really mean it. … [P]ragmatic Republican legislators, insurers and advocacy groups for patients and health care providers ought to press their governors to move ahead [with health exchanges] (11/10).Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Create Insurance Exchange To Meet Wisconsin’s Needs An unlikely collection of business groups and liberal Democrats is urging [Gov. Scott] Walker to have the state do its own work, and we agree that’s probably the best approach. A Wisconsin exchange should acknowledge the state’s unique strengths and be tailored as much as possible to the state’s health care landscape. The Affordable Care Act requires certain baseline standards, and federal officials will have to sign off on any state-designed exchange. That’s why that other option — the blended approach of close cooperation with federal health care officials — also might make sense (11/12).The Baltimore Sun: Maryland’s Obamacare Gamble Pays OffThe outcome of last week’s presidential election has vindicated the wisdom of Maryland’s early decision to begin setting up a state health exchange where consumers can shop for affordable health insurance coverage. President Barack Obama’s victory virtually assures that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act he signed in 2010 will go into effect as planned in 2014 (11/12).The New York Times: Incredible Prices For Cancer Drugs An unusually bold stand by doctors at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York has forced a big drug company to reduce the cost of an overpriced drug for treating colorectal cancer that was no better than a cheaper competitor and did almost nothing to extend a patient’s life. It is a heartening sign that alert and aggressive physicians can potentially play a major role in helping to reduce the escalating costs of health care for treatments of marginal value (11/12). The Wall Street Journal: Not Enough Cancer Drugs, Too Many Price Controls Cancer patients face daunting challenges, including side effects of treatment, impact on family life and work disruptions. They now face another problem: shortages of vital drugs. Imagine an oncologist talking to his patient: Everything is going well with your treatment, he says, but one of the drugs you’ve been receiving is unavailable. There’s a substitute — sort of. Your Medicare copayment for the drug we’ve been using is $9. Now it will cost you $520 each time the substitute is given (Bill Cassidy and Patrick W. Cobb, 11/11). Los Angeles Times: Patient Trapped In Health Insurance Rate Hike It’s understandable that car insurance rates can change when you move. One neighborhood might have more accidents or burglaries than another. But health insurance? (David Lazarus, 11/13). Kansas City Star: Condom Requirement For Porn Actors Gets A Bad WrapA condom is not a crime against humanity. It’s a form of protection. But to hear James Deen, one of the porn industry’s biggest stars tell it, a new Los Angles County law requiring adult film actors to wear condoms is no different than laws banning gay marriage. The Safer Sex in the Adult Film Industry Act, known as Measure B, passed Tuesday in Los Angeles County. Proposed by the AIDS Healthcare Foundation, the legislation mandates performers wear condoms and also requires porn producers to apply for a permit from the L.A. County Department of Public Health. The Free Speech Coalition, a trade group representing the adult film industry, is planning to challenge the rule (Jeneé Osterheldt, 11/11).Richmond Times-Dispatch: Tobacco: Money to BurnThe catechism recited by every advocate for a government program includes a line to the effect that spending money now will save money later. If that were true, then at some point one would expect government spending to shrink. Absent outside forces — such as a recession — it never does. But just because the argument is not true in all cases does not make it false in every case. Some spending probably does save money down the line. Spending for smoking-cessation treatments likely falls into that category. Yet as a recent Times-Dispatch news story pointed out, Virginia spends only a small fraction of what it should on smoking prevention and cessation (11/13). Viewpoints: Starting Point For Fiscal Cliff Puts Entitlements At Risk; Cancer Center’s Actions Provide Leadership On Reducing Drug Priceslast_img read more

Public Unions Pushed To Accept Less Expensive Health Benefits

first_img This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. Public Unions Pushed To Accept Less Expensive Health Benefits The New York Times explores how local governments are pressing unions to accept less expensive benefit packages to avoid the health law’s so-called Cadillac tax which goes into effect in 2018. Other news outlets examine health law outreach efforts, as well as how August might be a ‘steamy’ month of town hall meetings.The New York Times: Health Care Law Raises Pressure On Public UnionsCities and towns across the country are pushing municipal unions to accept cheaper health benefits in anticipation of a component of the Affordable Care Act that will tax expensive plans starting in 2018. The so-called Cadillac tax was inserted into the Affordable Care Act at the advice of economists who argued that expensive health insurance with the employee bearing little cost made people insensitive to the cost of care. In public employment, though, where benefits are arrived at through bargaining with powerful unions, switching to cheaper plans will not be easy (Taylor, 8/4).CNN: Obamacare Battle Heads To StatesDoes this sound familiar? The summer before campaigning begins in earnest for midterm congressional elections, activists hit the road to wage war on President Barack Obama’s health care ideas. If August 2013 is starting to shape up like August 2009 – that steamy month of angry town halls fueled by the then-burgeoning tea party movement – it’s because the Affordable Care Act remains in the crosshairs for conservatives, whose commitment to repealing the law endures (Liptak, 8/2).The Fiscal Times: Obamacare’s $95 Bet On Millenials Buying InsuranceObamacare either looks like a deal or a rip-off, depending on which state you call home – and on which political party occupies the governor’s mansion. As state regulators release their 2014 monthly premium rates, it becomes clear how a combination of political motives and existing state regulations have distorted whether Obamacare can deliver the promised savings (Boak, 8/5).Bloomberg: Obamacare Depends On Math Of Matt Saniie From Campaign Data CaveThe success of President Barack Obama’s health-care plan depends on signing up millions of uninsured Americans, and Matt Saniie knows how to find them. Fresh out of the Obama re-election campaign “Data Cave,” the 31-year-old math whiz has gone from tracking likely voters in battleground states to honing a statistical model that can predict with 99 percent accuracy whether someone has insurance (Dorning, 8/5).Politico: Obamacare Message War Goes LocalA race to define Obamacare to the masses began today between the stacks at the Centreville Library. Over pizza in Decatur, Texas. And with a glass of wine in Naples, Fla. Dozens of communities around the country hosted pro-Obamacare events, convened by the president’s foot soldiers at Organizing for Action (Cheney, 8/4).last_img read more

Viewpoints SmallBore Budget Deal Better Than Shutdown Calif Battle on Medical Malpractice

first_img This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. Viewpoints: ‘Small-Bore’ Budget Deal Better Than Shutdown; Calif. Battle on Medical Malpractice; Obama Should Turn To Health Quality USA Today: Minimalist Budget Deal Beats Another Shutdown: Our ViewThe bipartisan spending deal announced Tuesday night by Senate Budget Chairman Patty Murray, D-Wash., and House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis., barely qualifies as a tweak. It would not make meaningful progress on reducing projected deficits, … BY any measure it is a small-bore deal, but it as at least  something — a toehold that prevents a serious fall and might, optimistically, enable a climb to safety. … It would also partially undo the inflexible across-the-board spending cuts known as sequestration. Longer term, the accord could signal the beginning of a more constructive relationship in Congress (12/10).USA Today: Budget Deal A Step Backward: Opposing View While imperfect, the sequester has proved to be an effective tool in reducing base discretionary spending. Nonetheless, conservatives have expressed a willingness to alter the budget caps established by the 2011 debt ceiling deal in exchange for immediate and substantive structural reforms that significantly reduce spending and address the real drivers of our debt. Unfortunately, the budget agreement struck by Rep. Paul Ryan and Sen. Patty Murray is a step backward (Michael A. Needham, 12/10). The Wall Street Journal: A Least Bad Budget Deal All of this doesn’t begin to match the magnitude of America’s fiscal challenges, but it is probably the best that the GOP could get considering Washington’s current array of political forces. … The question for Republicans is what happens if this fails? It means more turmoil, more evidence that the GOP can’t govern, and the risk of another shutdown. By contrast this deal pushes the budget debate past next November and lets Republicans focus on ObamaCare and its many ills. … The deal means overall federal spending will not decline in 2014 as it has the last two years (12/10). Bloomberg: Now Obama Can Target Health-Care Quality Indeed, over the past few years, the Congressional Budget Office has lowered by more than $1 trillion its projected estimates of Medicare and Medicaid spending over the next decade. But we are only at the beginning of what is possible. Now, President Obama should step forward with bold national goals. One would be a dollar-and-date target for total health-care savings, based on the above projections for improvements in the quality and coordination of care. Or, to make the goal easily measurable, the president could declare that, starting in 2020, health-care spending per person should rise no faster than general inflation (Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., and Peter Orszag, 12/10). Los Angeles Times: The Battle Between Doctors And Trial Lawyers Grows More Infantile California initiative campaigns have a way of reducing all important public policy issues to their lowest intellectual denominators — and highest financial numerators. The coming battle over the state’s medical malpractice limits looks certain to set records in both categories. We’ve written before about the necessity of modernizing MICRA, the Medical Injury Compensation Reform Act of 1975. Even its drafter acknowledges that it was botched at birth; because its limit of $250,000 on pain-and-suffering recoveries isn’t indexed to inflation, it serves merely to shut the courthouse door to the victims of medical malpractice (Michael Hiltzik, 12/10). The New York Times’ Economix: Conflicting Pressures On Demand For Doctors But the new law limits payments to physicians and other medical providers. If patients are lucky, the demand for doctors will be low enough that the limits will not matter. But if the new law results in a significant net increase in physician demand, the payment limits will help remind us of Soviet-era limits on the price of bread, with queues and black markets to follow  (Casey B. Mulligan, 12/11). The Washington Post’s Right Turn: The Deck Is Stacked Against Obamacare Democrats and their media allies are giving us a bad case of whiplash. Obamacare will work! Obamacare won’t matter! Obamacare is going to give millions of people affordable health-care coverage! Of course it’s more expensive — look what you are getting! Yes, these are contradictory spiels, an inevitable consequence of a White House is disarray, if not on the verge of panic. Depending on the spin of the moment (HealthCare.gov is fixed! It doesn’t matter if it’s fixed!), the left-leaning blogosphere twists this way and that, trying to follow the White House’s logic (Jennifer Rubin, 12/10). The Washington Post’s The Plum Line: Another Potential Boost For Obamacare Opponents of the Affordable Care Act tend to suggest expanded coverage resulting from the law’s Medicaid expansion somehow doesn’t really count as success. But the law’s goal is to expand coverage, and the Medicaid expansion is one of the tools it utilizes to accomplish that. And here’s another way the Medicaid expansion could succeed — continuing to grow the built-in constituencies that will benefit from the Affordable Care Act (Greg Sargent, 12/10). The Fiscal Times: HealthCare.Gov: Better, But Not Ready For Prime TimeWhile the White House has insisted that most of the problems with the site are fixed, there are still plenty of bugs that prevent it from doing its intended mission: Linking Americans with affordable private insurance policies. The latest chapter in my two-month-long quest involved trying to bypass the buggy system. Although I was finally able to log on recently after a short respite in the HealthCare.gov “waiting room,” I got bounced to an error page that stated my “identity wasn’t verified” (John F. Wasik, 12/11). Fox News: Dr. Manny: Specialty Doctors Will Be Hard To Find Under ObamaCarePatients covered by Medicaid often have no choice but to hope their problems are being addressed at these clinics in an adequate manner. So imagine what’s going to happen once ObamaCare expands Medicaid enrollment, or better yet, when some basic health plans pick up more patients who are looking for more affordable insurance premiums.  Are you going to be able to easily find a dermatologist, ophthalmologist or orthopedic surgeon – especially during a limited timeframe in which your problems need addressing? I don’t think so (Dr. Manny Alvarez, 12/10). Georgia Health News: A Win-Win Plan: Protecting Providers, Reducing Costs In 2010, Congress adopted President Obama’s Affordable Care Act (ACA) with the goal of providing access to high-quality, affordable health care. One of the many flaws in the ACA is that it fails to address our broken medical malpractice system. By placing physicians and hospitals at financial and professional risk when an error occurs, our medical tort system increases the cost of health care, because it encourages the practice of defensive medicine. The system also decreases access to compensation for those with minor medical injuries, and interferes with quality improvement measures (Henry N. Goodwin Jr., 12/10). last_img read more

Kindred Healthcare Acquires Gentiva

first_imgThe combined company, based in Louisville, Ky., will be the nation’s largest provider of long-term care, hospice and home-health services.The Wall Street Journal: Kindred Healthcare Gets Gentiva After Five-Month ChaseThe combined company, which will be based in Louisville, Ky., will be the nation’s largest provider of long-term, acute-care hospitals; inpatient rehabilitation facilities; and hospice and home-health services, with annual revenue of about $7.1 billion, according to a statement Thursday. Kindred’s offer of $19.50 a share in cash and stock represents a 17 percent premium to Gentiva’s closing price on Wednesday, and is above the $13-a-share offer Kindred initially made earlier this year. Including the assumption of debt, the deal is valued at about $1.8 billion (Dulaney and Whalen, 10.9).Elsewhere, employers are capping what they pay for some health procedures, but the savings may not be all that large –Kaiser Health News: Capsules: Study Finds Savings Low For Employers Capping Their Payments For TreatmentsIn an effort to slow health care spending, more employers are looking at capping what they pay for certain procedures — like joint replacements — and requiring insured workers who choose hospitals or medical facilities that exceed the cap to pay the difference themselves. But a study out Thursday finds employers might be disappointed with the overall savings. While the idea, known as “reference pricing,” does highlight the huge variation in what hospitals and other medical providers charge for the same services, the report says, it does little to lower overall health care spending (Appleby, 10/9). This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. Kindred Healthcare Acquires Gentivalast_img read more

Bernie Sanders Accuses Drugmaker Of Fleecing Americans With Staggering 375000 List Price

first_img As new competition arrives for its best-selling Botox treatment, Allergan (AGN) is asking the International Trade Commission to investigate a pair of rival companies for allegedly stealing trade secrets for a new version of its medicine. In its complaint, Allergan contended a former employee at Medytox, which has a deal to supply the drug maker with a newer wrinkle-smoothing treatment that is still being tested, stole detailed information and provided the material to Daewoong Pharmaceuticals. Late last week, meanwhile, Daewoong and Evolus (EOLS) won Food and Drug Administration approval for Jeuveau, a Botox competitor due to become available this spring. (Silverman, 2/4) In a blistering letter, Sanders accused Catalyst of “corporate greed” for charging a $375,000 list price for Firdapse, which is used to contain Lambert-Eaton myasthenic syndrome, or LEMS. Until December, patients could obtain an unapproved version for free from Jacobus Pharmaceuticals, a small, family-run company, thanks to a compassionate use program overseen by the Food and Drug Administration. A spokesman for Catalyst later in the day wrote us that its “top priority is improving patient care in the LEMS community” and will respond to Sanders “in a timely manner and provide information about Firdapse and the programs that we have in place to raise awareness of LEMS, facilitate accurate and timely diagnosis, and broaden affordable patient access to an FDA-approved treatment.” (Silverman, 2/4) Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) on Monday asked a pharmaceutical company why a drug that was once free for patients now costs as much as $375,000 annually. Catalyst Pharmaceuticals informed investors in December about the new pricing for Firdapse, which is used to treat the rare neuromuscular disorder Lambert-Eaton Myasthenic Syndrome (LEMS), Sanders wrote in a letter to the company. (Daugherty, 2/4) Stat: Congress Wants These 7 Drug Company CEOs To Testify About Prices The Hill: Sanders Asks Why Once-Free Drug Now Costs $375,000 A Year Burlington Free Press: Bernie Sanders On Drug Prices: Catalyst’s Firdapse Now Costs $375K? Bernie Sanders Accuses Drugmaker Of ‘Fleecing’ Americans With Staggering $375,000 List Price For Drug That Was Once Free Patients suffering from a rare disorder previously were able to obtain the treatment for free from a small pharmaceutical company that offered it through an FDA program called “compassionate use.” In November, the FDA allowed Catalyst to distribute the drug, with exclusive rights to market it. The following month the company said it would sell Firdapse for $375,000 a year. In other news, lawmakers are inviting CEOs from seven major drug companies to testify on prices. The Hill: Bipartisan Senate Panel Leaders Ask 7 Major Drug Companies To Testify On Their Prices The top Republican and Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee on Monday invited seven major drug company CEOs to testify at a hearing later this month in what could become a tense confrontation over drug prices. Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) on Monday sent letters to the companies asking them to testify at a hearing on Feb. 26. (Sullivan, 2/4) Stat: Sanders Calls Price Of A Rare Disease Drug ‘Immoral Exploitation’ This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. Stat: Allergan Asks The ITC To Investigate Its New Botox Rivals For Stealing Secrets At a hearing last week, both Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) expressed disappointment that pharmaceutical companies executives had declined their invitations to testify. Grassley, the committee chairman, said then he would be “more insistent” that executives show up at a subsequent hearing. “Pharmaceutical companies receive billions of dollars a year from federal programs like Medicare and Medicaid,” Grassley and Wyden said. “This is an opportunity for companies that produce life-saving treatments to explain how they price these treatments and whether the status quo is acceptable. Patients and taxpayers deserve to hear from leaders in the industry about what’s behind this unsustainable trend and what can be done to lower costs.” (Facher, 2/4) In other pharmaceutical news — The drug in question is called Firdapse, which was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in November last year for the treatment of Lambert-Eaton myasthenic syndrome, or LEMS, in adults. The FDA describes LEMS as “a rare autoimmune disorder that affects the connection between nerves and muscles and causes weakness and other symptoms in affected patients.” (Soga, 2/4) last_img read more

Green Deals DEWALT FlexVolt 60V Electric Trimmer and Chainsaw 319 Reg 450

first_imgSource: Charge Forward Home Depot offers the DEWALT FlexVolt 60V 15-inch String Trimmer and Chainsaw with battery for $319 shipped. Originally a $518 value, we’ve seen this bundle go for closer to $450 in recent months. Today’s deal is the best that we’ve tracked. This bundle includes everything you need for cold weather cleanup, making it easy to get your property in shape for those winter months. And of course, no gas and oil help this pairing stay environmentally-friendly. Rated 4.3/5 stars. more…The post Green Deals: DEWALT FlexVolt 60V Electric Trimmer and Chainsaw $319 (Reg. $450), more appeared first on Electrek.last_img read more

Rivian Third EV Is A RallyLike Car With Bananas Level Of Performance

first_img Rivian R1S Electric SUV In-Depth & Up-Close: Everything You Need To Know Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on December 5, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle News Rivian Shows Us How R1T Electric Truck Was Born First, a truck, then an SUV. Third in line is a rally-style lifted performance car.Rivian wowed the world in LA when it debuted not one, but two groundbreaking electric vehicles. Now, it seems, Rivian is already discussing its third pure electric offering.More From Rivian 2020 Rivian R1T Electric Truck: InsideEVs Takes Closer Look In LA According to Rivian, the R1T electric truck and R1S electric SUV will be joined by a third offering. This vehicle fits the mold of a rally-like performance car.Quoting Autocar:Rivian founder and CEO RJ Scaringe said that the model to follow its initial R1T pick-up truck and R1S SUV would be “bananas” in the way it performed.The third offering from Rivian won’t be quite as large as the R1S. Rivian says the wheelbase will be smaller and that it will look something like a lifted car. A lot of ground clearance is a given. High performance is too, as Rivian only intends to offer vehicles with long range and mega horsepower.Rivian CEO R.J Scaringe states:“The third vehicle will have a smaller wheelbase [than the R1S SUV] and will be the Rivian interpretation of a rally car with a lot of ground clearance.”Scaringe adds that any vehicle with a Rivian badge will have a “combination of on and off-road performance, and a level of functionality that’s unique in its space.”There’s no word yet on a launch timeline for this “bananas” car, but it will for sure follow after the R1T and R1S. So, perhaps 2021 or 2022.Beyond that, there could potentially be even more Rivian vehicles, as Scaringe seems open to the idea of sharing Rivian’s skateboard platform:“You could build an 800hp R1T truck or a goods delivery van, or a shuttle bus.” Source: Autocar Source: Electric Vehicle Newslast_img read more

See Which EV Wins An Efficiency Showdown

first_img Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on January 22, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle News How The EPA Rates Electric Cars: Range, Efficiency & More Electric Cars Battery Capacity and Efficiency: In-Depth Analysis, Graphs Source: Electric Vehicle News In the video above, electric vehicle YouTuber Bjorn Nyland has rounded up owners of the Ioniq Electric and various flavors of Model 3 — from rear-wheel-drive Long Range to Performance — along with a Chevy Bolt and, for laughs, a Tesla Model S. After getting them assembled in one place, the group gets their motors running and head out on the highway. The EV convoy covers a route of about 77 miles, returning to the original starting point to compare figures.Spoiler alert*Among the various Model 3 on hand, it was thought that the one driven by Bjorn would be the most efficient. It’s a Long Range rear-wheel drive variant, sitting on 18-inch wheels while wearing the standard issue aerodynamic wheel covers. As the results are tallied, it turns out that this car gave the best result among the Tesla vehicles with an average score of 232 Wh per mile (144 Wh/km).As you can see in the image above, the result was close, but in this test the Model 3 also managed to edge out the Hyundai Ioniq. The Korean car, in turn, managed to stay ahead of the Dual Motor versions of the mid-size Tesla and even a rear-wheel drive car wearing 19-inch wheels. For its part, the Chevy Bolt finished better only to the full-size Model S. Sadly, there was no Nissan LEAF involved in the action, but judging by the EPA figures, it would have been edged out by the Chevy.Of course, this wasn’t a scientific undertaking. If the route had been more city-traffic oriented, the Ioniq Electric may have easily cleaned up, if its 150 MPGe city rating is as accurate as we expect it is. Still, it gives us a good indication of how these cars stack up, as well as how factors like all-wheel-drive can impact efficiency.In the final analysis, we have to say the RWD Model 3 and the Ioniq Electric will have to share the efficiency crown. It should be interesting to see how these numbers shift in the future when the Hyundai hatchback gets a bigger battery later this year.Source: YouTube Tesla Model 3 vs Chevy Bolt vs Hyundai Ioniq vs Tesla Model SWho is the king (or queen, if you like) of electric vehicle efficiency? For a long time, the Hyundai Ioniq Electric has worn this crown. Indeed, the EPA rates the 2018 edition at 136 MPGe for combined highway and city driving. This is good enough to edge out its closest competitor, the Tesla Model 3, which wears a 130 MPGe combined rating. But does that really translate in the real world? There’s one way to find out.More about EV efficiency Bjorn Crowns Tesla Model 3 Efficiency King After High-Speed Testlast_img read more

Electric Peugeot 208 VW ID Crozz spotted during cold weather testing

first_imgSpy photographers recently caught glimpses of an electric Peugeot 208 and Volkswagen’s electric I.D. Crozz driving around in the snow. more…The post Electric Peugeot 208, VW I.D. Crozz spotted during cold weather testing appeared first on Electrek. Source: Charge Forwardlast_img

Tesla brings back free Supercharging as endofquarter incentive – with a caveat

first_imgSource: Charge Forward Tesla is bringing back one of its most popular sale incentives; unlimited free Supercharging, as an end-of-quarter incentive, but there’s a caveat. more…The post Tesla brings back free Supercharging as end-of-quarter incentive – with a caveat appeared first on Electrek.last_img

Kelley Blue Book Wonders If Latest Tesla Model S Still Impresses Video

first_img Tesla Increases Pricing On Most Cars, But Just By A Bit Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on April 1, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle News Tesla Model S Render Is Aggressively Rad, Raw & Sporty There is not much to dislike about the Model S, although some weak points remain over the years, such as the build quality being lower than in comparably-priced cars and the lack of Android Auto/Apple CarPlay. Additionally, Navigate on Autopilot – as beta – needs to be watched carefully, because as demonstrated, it can miss the exit ramp.Other than that, the Model S still doesn’t have any direct all-electric competitor and no other car can accelerate so quickly.“Lest you think we’ve forgotten about Tesla’s Model S in all the 3, X and Y hullabaloo, you’d be mistaken. Here it is, the 2019 Tesla Model S. And how could we forget with Ludicrous mode and that insane dual-motor power. There’s so much more to talk about, too, so that’s why Micah Muzio is here. Also, he impresses some friends with launches.” Tesla Model S gets better and better over timeWe are approaching seven years since the Tesla Model S was introduced in mid-2012. A lot has changed since then, as Tesla constantly improves its cars in various ways to get more range, more acceleration and to add tons of new features, usually updated over-the-air.This Kelley Blue Book test drive review presents the latest and top of the line Performance edition, as always with a dose of humor and beautiful footage.Tesla Model S How Much Does A Tesla Model S, 3, X & Y Actually Cost? Source: Electric Vehicle Newslast_img read more

Some Dems crafting climate plans while distancing themselves from Green New Deal

first_imgSource: Charge Forward A number of Democrats are now considering proposing various policies on climate change, including clean energy mandates and carbon pricing. And many of these Dems are purposely keeping their distance from the Green New Deal. more…The post Some Dems crafting climate plans while distancing themselves from Green New Deal appeared first on Electrek.last_img

Tesla shorts threaten to cause car accidents to discredit Tesla restraining order

first_imgSource: Charge Forward Earlier this week a Model 3 was spotted filming a self-driving demo ahead of Tesla’s autonomy investor event on Monday.  Curiously, we heard about this through a TSLA short-seller.  As it turns out, discussion following this tweet in the TSLA short community ended up focusing on the possibility of intentionally causing accidents in order to discredit Tesla ahead of the event.But that’s not all.  According to a legal filing by Tesla in Alameda county courthouse yesterday found by enn_nafnlaus on twitter, the individuals behind the short-seller’s twitter account have engaged in a pattern of harassment and stalking of Tesla property and employees and Tesla has officially sought a restraining order against them. more…Subscribe to Electrek on YouTube for exclusive videos and subscribe the podcast.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2LVEtRE51hUThe post Tesla shorts threaten to cause car accidents to discredit Tesla; restraining order filed appeared first on Electrek.last_img read more

EGEB Spain utility eyes Europes largest solar farm 2 GW floating solar

first_imgSource: Charge Forward In today’s EGEB:A Spanish utility plans to build the largest solar farm in Europe.The Netherlands looks to add 2 GW of floating solar.The Grain Belt Express transmission line is a step closer to construction once more.A hybrid energy park combines wind and hydraulic power in Greece.The world’s largest macadamia processor moves to solar power. more…Subscribe to Electrek on YouTube for exclusive videos and subscribe to the podcast.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V1zk7Eb8r-s&list=PL_Qf0A10763mA7Byw9ncZqxjke6Gjz0MtThe post EGEB: Spain utility eyes Europe’s largest solar farm, 2 GW floating solar, hybrid energy park, and more appeared first on Electrek.last_img read more

Sentry Mode Captures Hit Run Nissan LEAF Backs Into Tesla Model S

first_imgIt’s as if the Nissan LEAF driver didn’t even bother to look while backing up.Source: Electric Vehicle Newslast_img

Is This Appropriate

first_img View Gibson Dunn is generally viewed as having a top tier Foreign Corrupt Practices Act practice.The firm’s Year-End FCPA Update is always a quality read including this year’s version.Yet, highlighted below is a paragraph from the Update that caught my eye and I ask: seriously – is this appropriate?Early in the 36-page document is the following paragraph:“With dozens of dedicated and talented enforcement lawyers at DOJ and the SEC, and a team of law enforcement agencies working alongside them, it is little wonder that the FCPA’s 40th year was one of its most prolific. There is an energy in the hallways of the Bond Building, where DOJ’s FCPA Unit is staffed with a driven and relatively young team of prosecutors—clocking in at a median age just shy of 40, most were not alive when the statute was signed into law. Led by the articulate and indefatigable Dan Kahn, the majority of the 31 attorneys currently assigned to the Unit attended elite law schools, nearly 70% completed prestigious federal judicial clerkships early in their careers, and while more than 80% have private practice experience, the majority started with prior prosecutorial experience. Charles Cain, a quick study who distills complicated scenarios effortlessly, just this year assumed leadership of the SEC’s FCPA Unit. His attorneys likewise have deep experience, with the majority of the 31 attorneys joining the Unit from other positions at the SEC and nearly half having spent five years or more in the Unit. Each agency’s commitment to anti-corruption enforcement was on display during the second half of the year, with 21 combined FCPA enforcement actions in the last six months, bringing the total to 39 in 2017.”Granted some of the above is factual, but is it really appropriate for FCPA lawyers to publicly butter-up and bestow glowing superlatives on the public enforcement officials who have a huge amount of discretion over matters affecting their clients?Is this what the FCPA practice has devolved into? Aren’t FCPA lawyers supposed to be zealous advocates for their clients – and thus view and act as if the DOJ/SEC are adversaries?I am not suggesting a perfect parallel, but I invite you to consider that glowing public comments could be considered something of value to a public official (remember those charitable donation / internship / hiring practice FCPA enforcement actions in which the DOJ/SEC alleged that the foreign officials subjectively valued the thing of value), and that this something of value could be seen as an attempt to improperly influence the public official to exercise their discretion in a way advantageous to the one buttering-up the official.Regardless of what you think of the above topic, the Year-End FCPA Update is spot-on with the following observation.“In 2017, DOJ and the SEC pushed the boundary on who constitutes a “foreign official” for purposes of the FCPA perhaps even a step further.  In two corporate FCPA settlements, they included allegations buried deep in the charging documents that, although they do not constitute binding precedent as they were settled outside of court, do give a window into the government’s increasingly expansive view of the statute’s coverage.The SEC’s final FCPA charges of 2017 were levied against Massachusetts-based medical diagnostic test manufacturer Alere Inc. On September 28, 2017, the SEC announced that Alere consented to a cease-and-desist order alleging a variety of accounting violations, principally related to alleged revenue recognition violations, but which also included the failure to prevent and properly record improper payments to foreign officials in Colombia and India.  To resolve the charges, Alere without admitting or denying the SEC’s findings agreed to pay more than $3.8 million in disgorgement plus prejudgment interest and a $9.2 million civil penalty.  Alere has announced that DOJ closed its investigation without taking action.The SEC alleged that Alere made corrupt payments to a manager of a health insurance company in Colombia.  Although the health insurance company was privately incorporated, the SEC alleged that Colombia’s Ministry of Health took control of the company following allegations of mismanagement.  According to the SEC, the health insurance company thus became “an instrumentality of the Government of Colombia and its employees were officials of the Government of Colombia.”The second allegation of note in this regard concerns DOJ’s charges against SBM Offshore discussed above, and specifically the allegations of corruption in Kazakhstan.  SBM was alleged to have made corrupt payments to obtain oil exploration and development contracts both to an employee of KazMunayGas, Kazakhstan’s state-owned oil company, and to an employee of a subsidiary of an Italian oil and gas company.  Although the latter entity is clearly commercial in nature, DOJ alleged that its employee “was acting in an official capacity for or on behalf of KazMunayGas” because his employer was granted a concession to operate the oil field.  In other words, consistent with a view espoused in FCPA Opinion Procedure Release 2010-03, covered in our 2010 Year-End FCPA Update, DOJ treated an employee of a commercial company as a “foreign official” for purposes of the FCPA based on the company’s license to operate on behalf of a state-owned entity.”See here for the prior post titled “Foreign Official – Notable” regarding the SBM Offshore enforcement action. Free 90 Minute 2017 FCPA Year In Review Video A summary of every corporate enforcement action; notable statistics and issues to consider; compliance take-away points; and enforcement agency and related developments. Click below to view the engaging video tutorial.last_img read more

Exclusive Former SMU Law Dean Attanasio Gives First Interview

first_img Remember me Lost your password? Username (June 2) – John Attanasio, during his final few hours Friday evening as dean of SMU’s Dedman School of Law, gave an exclusive interview to The Texas Lawbook about his 15 years at SMU, the law school’s accomplishments during his tenure, his ouster as dean and what comes next for him. Hint: no one was more surprised than him . . .You must be a subscriber to The Texas Lawbook to access this content.center_img Password Not a subscriber? Sign up for The Texas Lawbook.last_img read more

The IPO Market In 2014 Are Boom Times Back

first_img Password The IPO market appears to have fully recovered from the stock market crash of 2008. Sixteen Texas-based companies priced initial public offerings in the first half of 2014 – up from five during the first half of 2013. This article compares the Texas IPO market to the rest of the U.S. We also provide details about the 16 IPOs so far this year, how well each has done and lists the law firms involved . . .You must be a subscriber to The Texas Lawbook to access this content. Not a subscriber? Sign up for The Texas Lawbook. Lost your password?center_img Username Remember melast_img read more

Scientists find role of schizophrenia gene in brain development

first_imgJun 8 2018A USC research team identified 150 proteins affecting cell activity and brain development that contribute to mental disorders, including schizophrenia, bipolar condition and depression.It’s the first time these molecules, which are associated with the disrupted-in-schizophrenia 1 (DISC1) protein linked to mental disorders, have been identified. The scientists developed new tools involving stem cells to determine chemical reactions the proteins use to influence cell functions and nerve growth in people.”This moves science closer to opportunities for treatment for serious mental illness,” said Marcelo P. Coba, the study author and professor of psychiatry at the Zilkha Neurogenetic Institute at the Keck School of Medicine of USC.Related StoriesStudy provides new insight into longitudinal decline in brain network integrity associated with agingGene modulation goes wireless hacking the “boss gene”Research opens possibility of developing single-dose gene therapy for inherited arrhythmiasThe findings appear in Biological Psychiatry.Schizophrenia affects less than 1 percent of the U.S. population, but has an outsized impact on disability, suicide and premature deaths.The DISC1 gene was linked to schizophrenia nearly 20 years ago. It controls how nerve cells called neurons develop, as well as how the brain matures. DISC1 also directs a network of signals across cells that can contribute to the disease. Scientists say errors in these chemical reactions contribute to schizophrenia.But the identity of proteins that DISC1 can regulate is poorly understood, prompting the USC researchers and colleagues from the State University of New York Downstate Medical Center to undertake the research. The challenge was to simulate conditions inside the human brain, Coba explained.Using stem cells, they conducted assays resembling habitat where DISC1 does its work. Then, they used gene editing to insert a molecular tag on DISC1, allowing them to extract it from brain cells and identify the proteins with which it associates.Identifying the proteins that interact with DISC1 in brain cells could lead to understanding how the risk factors for psychiatric diseases are connected to specific molecular functions, Coba explained. The discovery enables researchers to determine specific processes that differ in patients suffering from specific mental illnesses.”This gives researchers specific trails to follow within cells from both healthy patients and those diagnosed with disorders,” Coba said.Schizophrenia is one of the top 15 leading causes of disability worldwide. People with schizophrenia live an average of nearly 29 years less than those without the disorder, according to the National Institutes of Mental Health (NIMH).The illness is often accompanied by conditions such as heart disease and diabetes, which contribute to the high premature mortality rate among people with schizophrenia. About 5 percent of people with schizophrenia die by suicide, a rate far greater than the general population, with the highest risk in the early stages of illness, according to the NIMH. Source:https://news.usc.edu/144238/usc-scientists-discover-schizophrenia-gene-roles-in-brain-development/last_img read more

MUSC and Siemens Healthineers join hands to advance quality of health care

first_img Source:https://www.healthcare.siemens.com/ Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Aug 28 2018The Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) and Siemens Healthineers have formed a first-of-its-kind strategic partnership with the mutual goal of advancing the quality of health care in South Carolina. The partnership will capitalize on the coupling of MUSC’s clinical care, research and education expertise with Siemens Healthineers’ engineering innovations and workflow-improvement capabilities.”We are leveraging a longstanding relationship to reshape what we can both deliver in health care,” said David J. Cole, M.D., MUSC president. “Our nation is demanding that we address our fractured, costly and inefficient health care delivery systems. As the leading academic health sciences center in this state, MUSC’s purpose must be to drive the highest quality care for our patients at the lowest cost through commitment and partnerships. In discussions with the Siemens Healthineers team, we discovered a high degree of alignment with these concepts, and we are very excited to have them move forward with us. Our mutual goal is to not merely provide the best care possible for just our patients; we will define the new gold standard for others to follow.”Specifically, this new agreement will focus on driving performance excellence at MUSC and generating significant clinical and value-driven innovations in focused target areas including pediatrics, cardiovascular care, radiology, and neurosciences.”Ultimately, our goal is to enable health care providers to get better outcomes at lower cost. We will achieve that by empowering MUSC clinicians on this journey through four specific areas of focus – expanding precision medicine, transforming care delivery, improving the patient experience, and digitalizing health care,” said Dave Pacitti, president of North America for Siemens Healthineers. “These four core values of Siemens Healthineers are representative of the goals of our strategic relationship with MUSC, and we hope that the spirit of this flagship partnership will initiate a trend in value based care within the industry.”For example, MUSC and Siemens team members plan to drastically reduce the time it takes for severe stroke patients to receive treatment. The national standard for stroke care sets the goal at less than a 90-minute average from entry to the hospital to the start of the surgery to open a blocked blood vessel. While MUSC currently provides care for severe stroke patients well below that marker, this partnership creates an opportunity to do even more, with the aim of setting new industry-wide standards and increasing the number and variety of good outcomes for patients post-stroke.”South Carolina sits within our nation’s stroke belt, and by combining a world-class stroke program with the incredible power of Siemens Healthineers, we expect to achieve a level of excellence in stroke care that has never been routinely achieved in everyday practice,” said Patrick J. Cawley, M.D., MUSC Health CEO and MUSC vice president for health affairs, university. “The faster that we can get patients suffering from a stroke into treatment, the more likely a patient can return to a productive and healthy life. It’s ambitious, but it’s necessary if we want to achieve that alignment of increased efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and the highest quality of severe stroke care.”Related StoriesFirst smartphone app to detect childhood ear infectionGovernment policy and infrastructure have substantial impact on hospitalization of seniorsSupplements claiming to boost brain health are ‘too good to be true’, warn expertsAnother example of enhanced collaboration related to the new strategic partnership is the enhanced application of “digital twin technology.” A kind of artificial intelligence, a digital twin is a digital replica of a physical asset, process, or system. A digital twin has been deployed to optimize the patient and family experience and maximize efficiency at the MUSC Shawn Jenkins Children’s Hospital and Pearl Tourville Women’s Pavilion, a new facility currently under construction on the Charleston peninsula. This digital replica enables planning teams to quickly determine the impact of changes that would be costly, if not impossible, to test in the real world, and helps them forecast how well possible workflow solutions or health innovations may actually work in that new facility.Lisa Saladin, Ph.D., MUSC executive vice president for academic affairs and provost, sees the strategic partnership as capable of removing some systematic barriers to learning about and implementing health care innovations. “This partnership creates an unprecedented opportunity for MUSC students to share and learn from individuals they would otherwise not have access to in a more traditional educational setting,” she said. “I anticipate that our students will share and engage with health care data and informatics in new ways, be exposed to cutting-edge technologies designed to improve quality of patient care and provider work flows, and participate in research endeavors they never would have thought possible. This strategic partnership will better prepare them for the future of health practice.”For decades, MUSC and Siemens Healthineers have enjoyed successful affiliations centered around the development and utilization of specialty healthcare equipment for clinical and laboratory settings. While these affiliations will continue, this strategic partnership is intended to progress the relationship to the next level by pooling resources to promote clinical innovation, research-driving development, and education.”The partnership with MUSC is globally unique for Siemens Healthineers and a bold move for writing a new chapter for health care in the 21st century. Like no other company, we can help transform care delivery in everyday clinical practice with our innovative products and extensive experience in automation and digitalization, and bring added value to health care providers as well as patients,” said Bernd Montag, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer of Siemens Healthineers. “This cooperation is a blueprint for the future trend in value-based care: taking a holistic view of the care pathway from prevention to diagnosis, therapy, and follow-ups.””This strategic partnership provides each of our organizations with the ability to move to a continuum that changes what we are,” Cole said. “Make no mistake, this agreement is truly revolutionary and is unlike anything I’ve seen before. Through this process, both organizations will transform health care delivery in clinical practice, open new research pathways, and greatly enhance the exposure and involvement of our students in health care innovation.”last_img read more