February 29, 2024

Change Healthcare Cyber Attack Fallout Continues

The fallout continues over the cyber attack suffered by Change Healthcare.  United Health Group confirmed the attack was a ransomware one and that the BlackCat cyber gang was behind it.

Additional article here:https://www.modernhealthcare.com/cybersecurity/change-healthcare-cyberattack-outage-blackcat-alphv-2024

As well, good overviews of cyber security and the overall event and impacts: https://www.modernhealthcare.com/cybersecurity/change-healthcare-outage-cyberattack-data-breaches-2024 and https://kffhealthnews.org/news/article/unitedhealth-change-healthcare-blackcat-hack-cybersecurity/

Meanwhile, a prominent provider group is calling on the federal government to help them regarding the current Change Healthcare cyber attack, but to also strengthen security overall: https://insidehealthpolicy.com/daily-news/mgma-hhs-help-industry-mitigate-massive-ransomware-attack

(Some articles may require a subscription.)

#cyberattacks #changehealthcare

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Congress Passes Short-Term Funding Bill

The House passed a short-term funding bill by a vote of 320-99 vote and the Senate turned around passing it with a 77-13 vote.  It pushes a government shutdown out to March 8 and March 22. Work continues on appropriation bills.  House Speaker Mike Johnson, R-LA, is under attack by his own Freedom Caucus of rightist Republicans.  They could dethrone him unless he agrees to sufficient spending cuts and policy riders.

Article on Republican dynamics.  Only about half of Republicans supported the measure, while almost all Democrats did: https://thehill.com/homenews/house/4497480-head-of-freedom-caucus-bashes-funding-deal-vows-shutdown-fight/

Additional article here: https://thehill.com/homenews/house/4497940-house-passes-short-term-funding-bill-to-avert-shutdown/

#governmentshutdown #crs

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Health Entities Wait For Their Fate In Permanent Funding Bill

Doctors, hospitals and community health centers did not get funding within the stopgap measure and will have to wait for a permanent funding bill to know their fate.

(Article may require a subscription.)

#healthcare #governmentshutdown

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Mississippi House Passes Medicaid Expansion

Medicaid expansion was passed by the Mississippi House Wednesday in a 98-20 vote. Debate was less than 15 minutes and now advances to the Senate. The new Republican House Speaker and Medicaid Chair advocated for it.  One author said the policy was a “moral imperative” and said it “should transcend politics.” Congratulations.

#aca #obamacare #medicaid

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Two Republican Senators Blast Regulation On Short-Term Plans

GOP Sens. Bill Cassidy (LA) and Mike Braun (IN) are blasting a Biden proposed rule that would restrict the duration of short-term health plans. These were significantly expanded under the Trump administration. My view is that these plans generally are junk and I don’t disagree overall with the plan to rein them in.

(Article may require a subscription.)

#aca #obamacare

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— Marc S. Ryan

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