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Health Insurance Coverage Protection Act
On February 13th, 2009, Anna G. Eshoo (D-CA) and Jim Langevin (D-RI), along with Senators Byron Dorgan (D-ND) and Olympia Snow (R-ME), introduced the Health Insurance Coverage Protection Act (H.R. 1085, S 442). The legislation, introduced in both Houses of Congress in 2008, would set a $10 million minimum lifetime cap on health insurance, with future increases based on inflation.
A brief summary of this proposed legislation can be found here. EDNF is a member of NORD and therefore, NORD’s Washington Office will keep EDNF updated on any developments of interest related to this and other pending legislation. Rumor has it that the legislation may be folded into the larger healthcare reform legislation slated to be introduced this year. What impact this will have is yet unknown. We will know more in the next few weeks.
End the Two-Year Wait for Medicare
EDNF is a signer of this new legislation and supports this new bill to End the Two-Year Wait for Medicare. The bill will be reintroduced this week.
The major actions of this bill are:
- A 10 year phase out of the waiting period for everyone who is receiving SSDI
- An immediate elimination for individuals with life-threatening conditions – as determined by the secretary of HHS
- An immediate elimination for individuals who have no other access to insurance
The following letter will be released as soon as the bill is introduced.
To view the letter, click here.
Action Alert Update - Senate Passes NIH Amendment
Senate Passes NIH Amendment
On Tuesday night 02/03/2009, the U.S. Senate passed an amendment to include $6.5 billion in funding for the National Institutes of Health. This is an addition to the bill’s $3.5 billion for NIH, which would bring the total to $10 billion.
The amendment’s passage does not guarantee that the NIH funding will be in the final American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
No further action is needed at this time on this request. We’ll notify you again when action is require
WE ASKED THAT YOU WRITE YOUR SENATORS AND YOU DID! THANKS FOR ALL YOUR HELP!
ADVOCACY MAKES A DIFFERENCE.
ABLE: Achieving a Better Life Experience Act of 2009
To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to provide for the establishment of "ABLE" accounts for the care of family members with disabilities, and for other purposes. Click here to learn more.
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
This Act may be cited as the ‘Achieving a Better Life Experience Act of 2009’ or the ‘ABLE Act of 2009’.
SEC. 2. PURPOSES.
The purposes of this Act are as follows:
(1) To encourage and assist individuals and families in saving private funds for the purpose of supporting individuals with disabilities to maintain health, independence, and quality of life.
(2) To provide secure funding for disability-related expenses on behalf of designated beneficiaries with disabilities that will supplement, but not supplant, benefits provided through private insurance, the Medicaid program under title XIX of the Social Security Act, the supplemental security income program under title XVI of such Act, the beneficiary’s employment, and other sources.
In simple terms, this legislation is designed to encourage individuals with disabilities such as EDS, and their families, to save money for disability-related expenses. This would supplement, NOT replace, benefits already being provided by Medicaid and private health insurance coverage, through accounts which are similar to Individual Retirement Accounts (IRA's)
Rep. Ander Crenshaw [R, FL-4], Rep. Patrick Kennedy [D, RI-1], Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers [R, WA-5] and Rep. Kendrick Meek [D, FL-17]
This appears to be a way to help us help ourselves - urge your members of Congress to co-sponsor and support the Achieving a Better Life Experience Act of 2009.
Voluntary Recall of Morphine Sulfate 60mg Issued by Ethex Corp.
Ethex Corporation notified healthcare professionals of a voluntary recall of a single lot of morphine sulfate 60 mg extended release tablets (Lot No. 91762) due to a report of a tablet with twice the appropriate thickness. Oversized tablets may contain as much as two times the labeled level of active morphine sulfate. The lot was distributed by Ethex Corporation under an 'Ethex" label between April 16th and April 27th of 2008.
An over dosage or over strength of opioids such as morphine have life-threatening consequences, including respiratory depression (difficulty or lack of breathing) and low blood pressure. Due to their illness, many patients for whom this product is prescribed are more likely to be highly debilitated with reduced strength or energy. Their impairment may make it more difficult to determine that a tablet is oversized than an unimpaired individual. For questions about the recall, consumers are encouraged to call their physician, pharmacist or other healthcare provider.
For any questions related to this action, please contact Ethex Customer Service (representatives are available Monday through Friday, 8 am to 5 pm CST):
Fax 1- 314-646-3751
For more information see http://www.fda.gov/oc/po/firmrecalls/ethex06_08.html.